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Mauritius: The Mauritian authorities won a first victory over the Chagos folder at the Arbitral Tribunal




The arbitral tribunal of the United Nations for the Convention on the Rights of the Sea has just agreed with Mauritius on the Chagos folder while Britain wanted to unilaterally establish a marine park in the archipelago.
 
The Mauritian authorities thus strongly criticized the British position to make a maritime zone without the approval of the Mauritian government which claims for years the sovereignty of Mauritius over the Chagos.
 
"Mauritius should be consulted before any decision taken regarding the Chagos Archipelago. And with the decision to establish a Marine Protected Area, the state of the archipelago will invariably be affected if it is possibly returned to Mauritius. In fact, court consider that the rights of Mauritius are legitimate ", highlights the judgment Wednesday, March 18, 2015.
 
For Olivier Bancoult, leader of the Chagos Refugees Group (RCMP), the victory was complete. "It is with great joy. Not only for me but also for the Chagossian community because for many years we protested against the installation of this marine park. This park was a a pretext for the British government to violate the right of return Chagossians. "
 
As a reminder, the Chagos Archipelago had been emptied from 1965 to 1973 from all its inhabitants to install American military bases including Diego Garcia, the main island of the archipelago, occupied by about 5,000 US soldiers 1,786 Chagossians had been forced to precipitately leaving their native island to reach Mauritius.
 
The Mauritian government claimed for decades the sovereignty of the Chagos Archipelago and the right of the Chagossians to live freely.



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