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List of areas disputed by Canada and the United States

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Title: List of areas disputed by Canada and the United States  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Maine, Cape Muzon, Colony of the Queen Charlotte Islands, Index of United States-related articles, Fort San Miguel
Collection: Canada Geography-Related Lists, Canada–united States Border Disputes, Disputed Waters, Lists of Places in the United States
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

List of areas disputed by Canada and the United States

Although Canada and the United States share the longest non-militarized United States-Canadian Border between two countries, there is a long history of disputes about the border's demarcation.[1]


  • Current disputes 1
  • Historical disputes 2
  • See also 3
  • References 4

Current disputes

  • Machias Seal Island and North Rock (Maine / New Brunswick), also known as the "Grey Zone," is occupied by a Canadian lighthouse but claimed by the United States and visited by U.S. tour boats.
  • Strait of Juan de Fuca (Washington / British Columbia) The middle-water line is the boundary, but the governments of both Canada and British Columbia disagree and support two differing boundary definitions that would extend the line into the Pacific Ocean to provide a more definite Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) boundary.
  • Dixon Entrance (Alaska / British Columbia) is wholly administered by Canada as part of its territorial waters, but the US supports a middle-water line boundary, thereby providing the US more maritime waters. Canada claims that a 1903 treaty demarcation is the international maritime boundary, while the United States holds that the maritime boundary is an equidistant line between the islands that form the Dixon Entrance, extending as far east as the middle-water line with Hecate Strait to the south and Clarence Strait to the north.[2]
  • Yukon–Alaska dispute, Beaufort Sea (Alaska / Yukon) Canada supports an extension into the sea of the land boundary between Yukon and Alaska. The US does not, but instead supports an extended sea boundary into the Canadian portion of the Beaufort Sea. Such a demarcation means that a minor portion of Northwest Territories EEZ in the polar region is claimed by Alaska, because the EEZ boundary between Northwest Territories and Yukon follows a straight north-south line into the sea. US claims would create a triangular shaped EEZ for Yukon/Canada.[3]
  • Northwest Passage; Canada claims the passage as part of its "internal waters" belonging to Canada, while the United States regards it as an "international strait" (a strait accommodating open international traffic).

Historical disputes

See also


  1. ^ McRae, Donald Malcolm; Munro, Gordon Ross. Canadian oceans policy: national strategies and the new law of the sea. University of British Columbia Press. p. 50.  
  2. ^ The Alaska Boundary Dispute, Tony Fogarassy, Clark Wilson LLP
  3. ^ US-Canada Arctic border dispute key to maritime riches, BBC News, 2 August 2010
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