Talk:United States Minor Outlying Islands

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ZIP Codes[edit]

Does anyone have a complete list of the ZIP codes of these islands?

There used to be military ZIP codes, which may not be in use anymore:

  • Wake: 96518
  • Midway: 96516
  • Johnston: 96305

The new wildlife refuges seem to have new ZIP codes:

  • Wake: 96898
  • Midway: ?
  • Johnston: 96850

Ratzer 13:40, 29 October 2006 (UTC)


Does anyone know when the name "United States Minor Outlying Islands" was coined or introduced, presumably by the Bureau of the Census? Ratzer 20:04, 29 October 2006 (UTC)

It is defined in United States Code of Federal Regulations, 48 CFR, Chapter 1, Part 2, Subpart 2.1, Section 2.101. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:16, 29 January 2014 (UTC)

Navassa dispute[edit]

Isn't Navassa Island also claimed by Haiti? If so, shouldn't this be noted on this page? --ScottMainwaring 15:08, 13 December 2006 (UTC)

Aye, indeed. —Nightstallion (?) 01:24, 24 December 2006 (UTC)

Source link 1[edit]

The link no longer works. Sparticuz 17:27, 6 March 2007 (UTC)


This Pacific Map is good, but I feel it needs to express some other American claims in the Pacific. For instance, the claim of the US to Washington and Fanning Atolls has not yet been dropped or ceded in any way, so why not add those islands on the map with disputed sovereignty asteriks? Also, can we get a map of the Caribbean with at least the three islands that are mentioned here? This is very nice. Reaganamerican 12:43, 7 March 2007 (UTC)

I noticed a small error on the map. The "Midway Islands" box also surrounds Kure Atoll, which is part of the state of Hawaii, not part of the US Minor Outlying Islands. --Lasunncty (talk) 07:27, 9 January 2009 (UTC)

incorrect info removed[edit]

For a bit of time, the article claimed that all of these islands were National Wildlife Refuges (NWR) and that Wake I. was the last NWR created. This is incorrect. As you can see at the Fish and Wildlife Service site and the CIA Factbook, Wake I. is not listed. - Thanks, Hoshie 08:16, 3 September 2007 (UTC)

Do you know Wake's current status? -Henry W. Schmitt 19:48, 3 September 2007 (UTC)
Wake is currently administrated by the US Dept of Interior (Office of Insular Affairs) with the US Air Force conducting activities (some sources state this is done by the US Army under a US Air Force permit); however the CIA Factbook states that the US Air Force has "administration and operation" responsibility for the island. Another agency has control over the facility on the island. See: [1], [2], [3], [4] - Thanks, Hoshie 23:53, 6 September 2007 (UTC)

Serranilla, Petrel Islands[edit] Page 39 of this report states Currently, the United States conducts maritime law enforcement operations in and around Serranilla Bank and Bajo Nuevo consistent with U.S. sovereignty claims. I would say that since the Coast Guard patrols these territories they would be considered as being administered by the United States. What source do you have proving that columbians are actively administerign the territories in question?XavierGreen (talk) 17:36, 12 November 2009 (UTC)

The articles on the subjects you're referring to are heavily sourced. If you search the online archives of the source you just provided, you won't find another making the same assertation. The Navy's website lists both territories specifically; a tourist website provides photos of Serranilla Bank (with its Red, Gold and Blue lighthouse flying the Colombian flag outside), claims made within the International CrimCourt by Colombia state that its Navy administers these territories; and a contract between the Colombian Navy and a private contractor (dated 2008) to replace the lighthouse structures on both territories concerned. They'd hardly be paying for development on islands that they don't yet control, would they? Rennell435 (talk) 13:55, 14 November 2009 (UTC)
It is also relevant to note that the GAO report is dated from 1997/98. Things can change in that length of time. olderwiser 14:28, 14 November 2009 (UTC)
Unfortunately i cant read spanish, so all of those sources are quite illegible to me. I concede the fact that from looking at the pictures it appears that Serranilla might be occupied by the Columbians, although the Petrel Islands dont appear in any of the photos you presented. It also should be considered that any small expedition can repaint the lighthouse and raise flags. I could go there and repaint everything in american colours, would the island then be under american control? Are the islands actively garrisoned by columbians? A related issue might be Navassa island. That island is claimed by the united states and actively patroled by the coast guard, however Haiti also claims the islands and haitian fishermen often camp out on the island.XavierGreen (talk) 20:27, 14 November 2009 (UTC)
As the invoice shows, it wasn't just a bunch of randoms with a flag and a can of paint. The Ministry of National Defence employed a major private contractor to replace the lighthouse structures and bulbs on both banks in February 2008. The pictures of Serranilla given were taken later sometime before May, when they were uploaded. The camo-painted huts in the photos house the marines, as noted in the caption. An image of Bajo Nuevo Bank's lighthouse, which flies the Colombian flag at its top, can be found here. Rennell435 (talk) 12:55, 15 November 2009 (UTC)
Once again i cant read spanish so the actually text is quite illegible to me. However the picture of Bajo Neuvo on the document does not show the flag of any nation. It simply shows the steel light beacon on bajo neuvo painted in red and white that most light houses/singal beacons are painted in in all countries. It appears that besides occasional patrols by both the columbian and american forces Bajo Neuvo is occupied by no one.XavierGreen (talk) 16:42, 15 November 2009 (UTC)
What's your source for continuing U.S. patrol? Other than the one-off document from the U.S. General Accounting Office, dated 1997/98... Not that patrolling matters anyway; it's the operation of the lighthouses that discerns occupation. Somebody has to maintain them, as per international law on major shipping routes. The invoices and contracts evince that the Colombian Navy oversees that. Page 35 of this one reports the shipping of batteries for the actual lights, and all materials necessary "for the Armada" to operate them. Yes, these are all in Spanish too--an online text translator can make it reasonably legible in English. Rennell435 (talk) 03:19, 16 November 2009 (UTC)
There is no lighthouse on Bajo Neuvo, there is only an electronic beacon, from the source you listed it appears that there is no permanent Columbian presence on the Petrel Islands. I would argue that the islands are administered by no one. If i were to sail there today, i seriously doubt from the evidence suggested that any columbians would be there to oppose me from raising any flag, or even pitching a tent and living there. I do concede that it appears that Serranilla is freqented somewhat more by the Columbians than any other state. Perhaps listing Bajo Neuvo as being administered by no one on its main page would be appropriate.XavierGreen (talk) 15:46, 16 November 2009 (UTC)

Whatever it is, somebody has to maintain the thing, and as my sources have pointed out, the Colombian Navy does that. Why would it not be administed by any state? It's on file as being part of Colombia, Colombia maintains patrols and the beacon, and other states deal with Colombia on matters concerning the two territories in question---Nicaragua here and here, Jamaica here, and Honduras here. If you can't provide a source for current patrolling by any other state, it seems indisputably Colombian. Rennell435 (talk) 10:54, 17 November 2009 (UTC)

    • The lighthouse on Bajo Neuvo is not regularly maintained. Before the refubishment you speak of the lighthouse had been abandoned and inactiveated. While there are habitable buildings on Serranilla, i have seen no evidence that there is nothing other than transitory occupation of the Petrel Islands by any nation. After a long online search i have been able to surmise the following, both American and Columbian DX expeditions occasionally travel to the island and broadcast there. The united states coast guard patrols the region and enforces its maritime laws. The Columbian military also patrols the area, and Jamaican fishermen frequent the area. As such this group of islands seems to be under firm control of no one, since anyone can transverse its territory with relative ease. A similar situation might be some of the unoccupied spratly islands, which are commonly traveled and used by all claimant countries. As such i don't see any clear evidence of the island being activley administered by anyone, Columbian, Jamaican, or American. Do you have any evidence of the columbians being present on the island besides the one expedition to refurbish the lighthouse?XavierGreen (talk) 22:10, 17 November 2009 (UTC)
      • Jamaica in the document provided does not wave its claim in favor of Columbia, it instead agrees to joint use of the territorial waters of the island by both countries. It does not defer to Columbia in any situation, and control of the islands themselves is not specified. Honduras and Nicaragua's claims on the territory have been long inactive. The United States does not defer to any nation over use of the waters.XavierGreen (talk) 22:14, 17 November 2009 (UTC)

You said you've done a big search, so can you provide the links to the sources that you used to come to the following conclusions:

  1. ...that the lighthouse is not regularly maintained (I'm pretty sure the batteries don't last forever, and with it being in an area prone to hurricanes I'd assumed that it would be),
  2. ...that the lighthouse was inactive before its replacement in 2008,
  3. ...that national DX expeditions frequent the island,
  4. ...that the U.S. Coast Guard continues to patrols the region (still waiting on that one),

That Jamaican fishermen frequent the region I know, but only with permission from the Colombian government (as per a bilateral agreement, see here.

I know the claim of Honduras is obsolete, that's why I provided the treaty document which demarcated the maritime border that puts Bajo Nuevo on the Colombian side, thereby explicitly recognising Colombia's sovereignty over the feature. Nicaragua's claim is the only one out of the three that actually is active. Sueing Colombia for sovereignty in the ICJ in both 2001 and 2007 (did you read the two casefiles I provided?) is hardly inactive, and it implicitly recognises that Colombia has the territories under its control. Otherwise, why bother with court proceedings at all if nobody administers them?

As for the U.S., you keep saying that its Coast Guard patrols the area, but you've yet to provide a credible source, and it's not even in their claimed maritime jurisdiction (see map). And as for this statement: The United States does not defer to any nation over use of the waters, again, you need to provide me with a source that backs up that claim--that U.S. fishermen are permitted to fish in those waters without Colombian approval.

The brochure I previously provided details the activities of GSEMAC and the Colombian Navy in the Caribbean region, with Bajo Nuevo mentioned amongst the areas included. There's also a report of maintenance frequency here. Also, this document gives a pretty good explanation of Bajo Nuevo's status as Colombian. I know you can't read Spanish, but you can't make unverified claims. Please back up your conclusions. Rennell435 (talk) 15:18, 18 November 2009 (UTC)

I have found several more documents supporting american soveriegnty/active administration by no one
  1. ...Here's a report on a recently planned dx expedition to the island [5] there are a few older expeditions as well if you would like me to post some evidence of them i shall.
  2. ...Here is a report from an American yachter who slept over night on Bajo Nuevo on his trip through the carribean, he reports the island to be deserted.[6]
  3. ...As for continued US Coast guard patrols, i intend to write a letter or email this weekend to the Department of the Interior to see what permissions are needed for visiting the two atolls in question. (most of the USMOI requires permission from the DOI in order to legally visit).
  4. ...[7] page 9 states that the two islands in question and their territorial seas are excluded from the Joint Regime area set up by Columbia and Jamaica. It also states that the US maintains soveriegnty claims over the islands.
  5. ...[8] page four lists the Petrel islands and Serranilla bank as insular areas of the united states whose residents are eligable for nonimmigrant status upon entry into the United States. Thus anyone living on Serranilla or Bajo Neuvo for the appropriate length of time or born their would be considered a US National.
  6. ...[9] a map on page 3 clearly shows the islands excluded from the Joint regime area. This map is from the UK Government, a party not involved in the dispute. It shows the islands as being controled by no one. Neither country defers to anyone or anything in regards to these two islands. Its simply an international free for all much like the unoccupied features of the Spratly Islands are. Im going away for a few days but ill have more info when i return.XavierGreen (talk) 18:34, 18 November 2009 (UTC)
I'm not sure what these sources are supposed to do for your argument. Expeditions by civilians (which was not what I thought you were referring to before) don't have anything to do with politics, as they can acquire landing permission from the government. The immigration document you provided doesn't prove anything about control--Argentina says the same thing about residents of the Falkland Islands. And please stop making unverified claims. You say that you've found evidence of U.S. CG patrol, and then, when I ask you for it, you say you're going to email them. Don't make assertations when you haven't any evidence in the first place. Otherwise, I'll cease taking your arguments seriously. You're yet to provide me with citations for #'s 1, 2 & 4 of what I asked. So I'll wait for your email, and meanwhile can you also provide the source you used to gain the conclusion that Jamaica does not defer to Colombia in regards to these two islands--because I've provided multiple documents that say it does.
I know the Joint-Regime agreement excludes Bajo Nuevo; it was a stipulation of Colombia's that it would be, in order to retain sole sovereignty over a feature that Jamaica claims in its Constitution. The fact that it was excluded is written in the article on Bajo Nuevo, which I wrote, and in the treaty document I provided before; there's a map here aswell. Its exclusion from the agreement is the reason why Jamaican vessels need Colombian permission to fish around Bajo Nuevo, as detailed in this document, which I also provided you with before. Please read the article and the sources I give you, because all this information is already in there and it doesn't have any impact on the matter. Rennell435 (talk) 06:20, 19 November 2009 (UTC)
First of all thank you for the documents provided, you've already found more than i had in two years of on and off searching. My reference to the yachters is to prove the point that besides the last expedition to replace the battery, the Petrel islands appears to be absent of columbian presence, sorry if it seemed confusing. I have read the source on the fishing treaty with Jamiaca, the document provided states that the treaty was adopted by Columbia and Jamaica and ratified by the columbian congress. Was the document also ratified by the Jamaican government? The exclusion of the islands from the joint regime area matters if the fishing document has not been ratified by the Jamaican government, because the document would not be recognized by them as being in effect (similar situations exist with the UN treaty on the law of the sea for example). I did not intend for my claims to come across as unverified, when i first made the claims about the Coast Guard i was relying on the 1998 Constitutional applicability document. I have not yet recieved a reply from either the coast guard or the DOI, I have emailed the CIA in the past about these same islands and it took nearly two weeks before i recieved a reply. I cannot find the webpage that stated the lighthouse was inopprative(I saw it over a year ago), but will continue searching. In the mean time I have located two more United States documents that relate to our discussion.
  1. ...[[10]] This bill currently pending in congress is i think the best evidence i have presented so far that America still actively enforces its claims and is active in the region. It states that if passed the NOAA would be required to do an oceanographic survey of all of the islands in question to determine their mineral resources. The NOAA has dozens of survey ships, and thus would be required by law to deploy at least some American governmental element to the islands. I suspect that the NOAA may indeed have surveyed the area in previous years, although i have no way of knowing without doing a freedom of information act search (I seriously doubt i'll be willing to go as far as that though lol)
  2. ...[11] is recent legislation passed that mentions the islands. I admit this does nothing to support any american occupation but i include it merely to suggest that the footnotes on the pages of United States Minor Outlying Islands that state there is only one (i think one says two) american sources in referance to continued american claims on the islands, be removed as i think i have at least proven that there are multiple documents relating to claimed American Soveriegnty over the islands. Maybe a discussion for a later day though.

XavierGreen (talk) 00:48, 20 November 2009 (UTC)

Ok, now we're getting somewhere :) Don't worry too much about the search on the lighthouse; the date of activation doesn't really make a difference on the issue. I will concede that, from your sources, it appears that Bajo Nuevo has no resident marines or other authority onshore. There are two treaties with Jamaica: the one pertaining to the Joint Regime, and the other that refers specifically to Serranilla and Bajo Nuevo, which are (as we've established) excluded from the JRA. The second document can be seen here in English; the footnote at the bottom of the 2nd page declares that it entered into force in August of 1982, after being ratified by both parties.

Neither of your new sources imply in any way that U.S. sovereignty is in force in the region, just perhaps that it still maintains the claim. The bill lists the islands as "possessions of the United States", but it doesn't say whether or not these possessions are actually under U.S. control, and the word "possession" is thrown in there seemingly without thought. For example, it also lists countries like Palau, the FSM and Marshall Islands--I'm aware that these countries are basically satellite or "puppet" states of the U.S., but they are recognised as sovereign in their own right.

As for the issue on U.S. government sources, it could be argued that many sources are secondary, most having probably acquired their lists through the one maintained on the Office of Insular Affairs website, here. Not one source seems to refer to the territories in question specifically, they just seem to be added on to some lists covering Insular Areas. Regardless, I don't have any issue with removing the foot notation on quantity--as long as what is noted is the actual status of the territories. It can well be argued that the U.S. claims sovereignty over these two banks (it can also be argued that it doesn't), but what I have not seen a credible argument for is that it actually exercises that sovereignty. And the actual status is what we're deliberating over here, so lets wait on the footnote's removal. Rennell435 (talk) 17:36, 20 November 2009 (UTC)

After reading the new version provided on the fishing treaty, i must agree with you that the islands are no longer actively claimed by jamaica (i suppose the respective pages could be updated to state that the Jamaican claim is dormant.) And yes Palau, FSM, and ROMI are soveriegn states in some sense but the United States retains a great deal of residual rights in each (Palau especially) and these rights are administered through the DOI so any legislation affecting the DOI oftentimes will pertain to the Compact States as well depending on the nature of the legislation.
I would say that a United States government owned vessel travelling through the territorial waters of the islands would constitue an exercise of sovereignty over the islands. Since the NOAA is a united states government run organization, and their ships are government property, i think that would qualify as an active attempt of maintaining soverignty. Thoughts?

I also think that since only the two of us have been partaking in the discussion, a neutral third opinion might prove worth while to show us anything we may have missed. Is there any way of putting out a call for such a thing?XavierGreen (talk) 02:31, 21 November 2009 (UTC)

Ok, I'll update the wording in the relevant article regarding the status of Jamaica's claim in a moment. But what the document shows most importantly is that the banks are obviously under Colombian jurisdiction. If Colombia did not administer the banks, the government of Jamaica would not need to defer to Colombia on fishing rights (not to mention restricting its catch). Nor would the government of Colombia have any plausible convention to allow it to extend its EEZ (which is recognised by the UN) over the surrounding waters, and there would be no basis for a Joint-Regime (which is also recognised by the UN). As for the NOAA, it would certainly do something for your case if their ships were to travel thru the waters in question--as long as they didn't need permission to do so. But, as of yet, I see no evidence that they've done that. How long does it usually take for a bill to get passed in the U.S. Congress? And even then, you'd need to verify that the NOAA actually carried out the analysis expedition. A third opinion would be fine--you could post a request on the this page... Rennell435 (talk) 09:51, 21 November 2009 (UTC)
I agree that I should investigate the NOAA surveys more, to see if they have actually happened yet. Its also quite possible that the bill will never get passed(as a great many bills do not). However looking over the Jamaica-Columbia treaty i have found a few more puzzling anomolies.
  1. ...Article XIV states that the treaty would be in force for 2 years, has it been renewed? Because if not all of its provisions would be rendered moot through its obsolesance.
  2. ...It seems through Article XI that Jamaica is recognizing that columbia administers the islands, but not that it has soveriegnty over them. As the article states that the treaty does nothing to affect soviegnty issues between the two states.
  3. ...As such the treaty clearly waves Jamaican rights to administer the islands. But this treaty is of a Bilateral nature and does not appear to have been ratified by any nation but Jamaica and Columbia. As such, the treaty may not be recognized by third party nations as having an effect over them or as being valid in their own policies as well, similar to how the Law of the Sea Treaty has stipulations that affect the nations that ratify it, but those who don't are not affected by its restrictions. XavierGreen (talk) 18:00, 21 November 2009 (UTC)

Ah, I didn't see that. Thanks. Yes, it seems from documents on the government's website that treaty expired in 1984, was renewed for another two years 'til 1986, but was not renewed after that. It is indeed extinguished; I'll have to revert that change on the articles. Article XI simply means that the agreement does not affect jurisdictional borders--i.e. Jamaica does not then have jurisdiction in Colombian waters just because its flagships are allowed to fish there.

Also, this report on the Senate Secretariat's website gives the reason for the banks' exclusion from the JRA (paragraph beginning "Del Area de Régimen Común arriba descrita...") as being due to their status as state coastal waters and thus an extention of national territory, which, presumably, Colombia would not allow Jamaica to infringe upon, even co-operatively. I also found this item on Google Books, which gives a speculative (but well informed) outline of the situation surrounding the Joint Regime Area and the two banks. Rennell435 (talk) 06:07, 22 November 2009 (UTC)

Ok, since that treaty is no longer in place, i suppose Jamaica's claim would be considered to have been dormant between 82-86 but active since then, as its fishermen still fish there. Since Jamaicans regularly fish there regardless of columbian claims as the (Jamaicans claim the area as there territorial waters as well) and at the very least American dx expeditions and yachters travel the area unmolested, i think there is enough evidence to argue that Bajo Nuevo is not under the effective control of any government, even though the columbians claim they are. I still concede with you that Serranilla is under Columbian occupation though. If you would still like to contest Bajo Neuvo i shall continue my search for NOAA expeditions in the region. Your thoughts?XavierGreen (talk) 07:01, 22 November 2009 (UTC)
How do you know that Jamaican ships still fish there? As for dormancy, just because the government hasn't renounced its claim doesn't mean that it's actively pursuing that claim--I've seen no implications that Jamaica is doing that... The only state that seems to be actively pursuing its claim in this region is Nicaragua, and the International Court dismissed that case in 2007, when its judgements awarded sovereignty over the islands to Colombia (Bajo Nuevo included) when Nicaragua asked for them to be handed over. And again, civilians are free to land wherever they like so long as they have the necessary permits, so the civilian expeditions make no impact on the bank's political status. Rennell435 (talk) 09:19, 22 November 2009 (UTC)
Ah the search must go on then!XavierGreen (talk) 17:14, 22 November 2009 (UTC)
I suppose landings by civilians without permits that are unmolested by the columbians would help my case though after reviewing the dx expeditions it seems that either they do not mention getting the permits but also dont mention not having them, or have sailed there along with columbians. I suppose i could sail there myself to find out, but i suppose that would be original research lol. I'll have to read through that yachter's blog and see if he mentions anything else about the islands that might be of interest.XavierGreen (talk) 03:44, 23 November 2009 (UTC)

Third Opinion[edit]

I came here due to a request at WP:3O. Numerous people have provided good sources, which merely add grist to the dispute, since we don't know who REALLY owns the island. I suggest that it's not up to us to resolve a controversy which the diplomats haven't solved yet. Sentences such as this one sound *way* too emphatic, given the uncertainties: Today, the cays are administered by Colombia as part of the department of San Andrés and Providencia. How about, 'Colombian documents assert that the cays are administered..' It is puzzling that the diaries of yachters, regarding the island being unoccupied, would be treated as settling the matter on a confused diplomatic issue. Some of the countries involved may be happy that the matter is still in limbo. It's not our mission to take it out of limbo. We should just accurately summarize what each country thinks. EdJohnston (talk) 20:34, 25 November 2009 (UTC)

What would you recomend listing the islands as in their respective infoboxes? Simply to leave them blank, as they were originally or under one particular nation?XavierGreen (talk) 20:41, 25 November 2009 (UTC)
Bajo Nuevo Bank is said to be claimed by three different countries in its infobox, plus being administered by Colombia. The 'administered by Colombia' should be modified to make clear that it is just a claim. I suggest that the lead be modified also, to treat the four claiming countries symmetrically. EdJohnston (talk) 20:55, 25 November 2009 (UTC)
I would be perfectly fine with that, the islands are practically terra nullis (anyone could do anything there without getting stopped by anyone) anyway it seems. What do you think Rennel?XavierGreen (talk) 01:36, 26 November 2009 (UTC)
I think if that were true, if it were terra nullius, that Nicaragua would have annexed the bank years ago. Why go through court proceedings if there's nobody there to stop you from simply taking it? I definitely agree with the notion that some states are content with the matter being left in limbo so far as legal documents go... But the question of the legality of Colombia's control in the region is not what's relevant to the infobox. Actual administration of the area can only be in limbo if there are a number of states operating in the region--like in international waters. But, as of yet, I haven't seen a source that states that this bank is treated as such.
There are two options for the Administration field of the infobox. If it is treated as terra nullius, the infobox should show the word "none" under Administration; but this would be incorrect because the Colombian Navy maintains the light beacon and patrols the waters. If somebody were to find a source that supports Jamaican/Nicaraguan/U.S. control over the bank, then they can add the respective state to the Administration field. Listing Administration with a question mark is not an option, as we have evidence that one of the claimants is active in the region.
Would I be correct in stating that this discussion no longer relates to Serranilla Bank? The article on that territory gives multiple government sources (supplemented with photographic evidence) that there is a naval station located on Beacon Cay. Rennell435 (talk) 02:45, 26 November 2009 (UTC)
I am not willing to contest the Serranilla bank issue , as ive seen a picture of the garrison there. I think the Issue with the Petrel islands can best be equated to several of the Spratly islands, some islands are clearly occupied by one power or another, others are not clearly occupied by one power or another, yet each of the powers claims to administer islands that that they do not firmly occupy. Some of the unoccupied islands have navivagional aids that are maintained by one power or another, but are not considered to be occupied by the power maintaining the navigational aides. Nicaragua did annex the bank in the 1800's, just as columbia, and the united states had so there would be no need to annex the bank a second time. Administration does not equate itself with control, for example the UK considers itself to administer the whole of the British Antarctic Territory yet controls virtually none of it with several other nations also making claims that they administer the same territory yet also controlling very minute parts of the region.XavierGreen (talk) 15:48, 26 November 2009 (UTC)

Yes, but there aren't any sources that show control by a second state. Nor are there any sources that contradict Colombia's control in the region. An outline of arguments so that people might gain some perspective:

Note acronyms used: BNB = Bajo Nuevo Bank and SB = Serranilla Bank.
  • The territorial waters (12 nm limit) surrounding BNB are recognised through related treaty documents in the United Nations, such as the internationally-recognised Colombia-Jamaica Joint Regime Area. Note that there is no legal basis for Colombia extending its EEZ that far north without recognition of its control over both BNB and SB.
  • Any naval patrols in the territorial waters (12 nm limit) surrounding BNB indicate a particular state's control over the feature itself. The website (in Spanish) of the Colombian Navy states that patrols in this area fall under the command of the San Andres Fleet. According to this document (in Spanish), the bank is under the continuous surveillance and control of the Navy. There are no sources provided that account for patrols by any other state.
  • The light beacon on BNB is maintained by a team called GSEMAC, which is overseen by the Colombian Ministry of Defence. BNB is among its designated areas of responsibility; see brochure (in Spanish). Contracts and invoices for the replacement of the structure itself in 2008, and for a box of batteries for the beacon's light, are located here and here (p35) respectively (both in Spanish). There is also an outline of maintenance activities located here (in Spanish).
  • As for U.S. Government: A portion of documents relating to "Insular Areas" of the state include BNB (as well as SB) in their list of territories. Few of these documents provide any information specific to BNB. The remainder simply maintain it as part of the list. This would amount to a possible territorial claim. No document from this source relates exclusively to BNB, SB or even both together.

There are multiple sources that show Colombia is exercising its sovereignty in the region. Patrols indicate control, and that's what we're talking about here--not diplomacy, legality or unresolved treaties--just active control in effect. Without credible sources that contradict those provided, we cannot remove what is a well-sourced claim. Without credible sources that show additional control by a second state, we cannot update the status of any of the other claimants. Rennell435 (talk) 16:14, 26 November 2009 (UTC)

Do you have any neutral source (not controlled by any of the national governments) which believes that Colombia has effective control? I think if you try to draw an inference from the existence of Colombian naval patrols, your conclusion would be WP:Synthesis. How about an article in Foreign Affairs magazine, for instance, that says 'Colombia has effective control.' That I would believe. EdJohnston (talk) 17:24, 26 November 2009 (UTC)
Searching the UN's webpage for Bajo Neuvo brings up only the fishing treaty document. What source are you citing that states the UN recognizes the Columbian EEZ claim?XavierGreen (talk) 18:23, 26 November 2009 (UTC)
As Xavier and I both know by now, it's very hard to find sources pertaining to BNB, because it's just a random spot in the ocean. It's not exactly in the spotlight for discussion in foreign all we've got is governmental sources. So is it the credibility of these sources that you're questioning? What's the difference between this situation and the one with Kingman Reef, Navassa Island or something that the U.S. is claimed to control--don't people come to that conclusion from the existence of naval patrols?
Also, we were talking before about civilians and government permission. There's a report from a DX expedition here from 2008(I think it might be the same expedition that we were looking at before). They acquired a licence or something from the government--closeup here, altho I'll type a transcript here for you to quickly translate.

La Directora encargada de administracion de recursos de comunicaciones del Ministerio de Comunicaciones
hace constar que:
el senor [NAME], con Pasaporte # [NUMBER] de La Republic de Hungria, con Licencia de Radioaficionado de la Autoridad Oficina Nacional de Comunicaciones de Hungria e Indicativo de Llamada [NUMBER] y el senor [NAME], con Pasaporte # [NUMBER] de Estados Unidos de America, con Licencia de Radioaficionado de la Comision Federal de Comunicaciones e Indicativo de Llamada [NUMBER], tienen permiso para operar el servicio de radioaficionado y utilizar el espectro radioelectrico en las bandas atribuidas al servicio por el Ministerio de Comunicaciones, en San Andres Islas, sus alrededores y en la ciudad de Cartagena, (Zonas HK0 y HK1), durante los dias comprendidos entre el 20 de Octubre al 20 de Noviembre de 2008; y se identificaran con el distintivo otorgado por el pais que les expidio su licencia, seguido del prefijo HK0 to HK1.
La presente constancia se expide en la ciudad de Bogota, D.C. 30 JUL 2008

Rennell435 (talk) 04:26, 28 November 2009 (UTC)

Any information on the UN recognition of the EEZ claim?XavierGreen (talk) 20:34, 29 November 2009 (UTC)
Just the JRA treaty as I mentioned. Altho I don't know if the treaty's registration with the UN accounts for recognition of its credibility. Rennell435 (talk) 15:32, 30 November 2009 (UTC)
Hmm, it appears then that the only document we have found so far not involving any of the parties involved in the dispute, is the UK one that just shows the islands as excluded from the JRA in the map. That map doesnt place the islands under jurisdiction of any country.XavierGreen (talk) 17:14, 30 November 2009 (UTC)

I assume you're talking about the document you posted earlier with an inserted map. You attributed it to the British government, but in fact it's an article published by Durham University. And the purpose of the map, which is crudely drawn and very basic, is to illustrate the maritime border claims between Honduras and Nicaragua. It could be argued that it simply shows that the two banks are excluded from the JRA, with no further details illustrated simply because they're not relevant to the article's subject. In any case, it's an amateur map, and given its ambiguity and inapplicable nature, I don't think it counts as a base for claiming terra nullius. Rennell435 (talk) 06:37, 1 December 2009 (UTC)

Regardless of its quality, its the only source on the issue from a party not involved in the dispute. Can you find any evidence from non-party sources to state that Columbia occupies bajo neuvo?XavierGreen (talk) 22:01, 1 December 2009 (UTC)
I'm not just disputing its quality--I was mainly disputing its relevance to this subject, as well as the argument that it depicts anything about ownership over the two banks in question. It just shows maritime boundaries. I assumed that the link to the licence I posted would suffice--the guys wouldn't have gotten it unless they had to... But other than that, what's wrong with the documents from the government? Rennell435 (talk) 00:33, 2 December 2009 (UTC)
While the license is interesting, the link to a picture of a radio license hosted on a personal web site would not constitute a reliable source. And granting such a license does not require even a physical presence on the island. Any country that was so inclined could issue radio licenses for the same area. If there were a grand international radio authority that had assigned Colombia the right to issue licenses for that area, that would be significant. (Since that would be a third party opinion). EdJohnston (talk) 03:20, 2 December 2009 (UTC)
What about this organisation...(file p22, #'d p6) it has to do with park management or something and it's not affiliated with the Colombian government. Does that count? It's a very obscure place, and there's not much out there about it besides legislation, lighthouse stuff, and environment. Rennell435 (talk) 13:01, 2 December 2009 (UTC)
I don't see any mention of columbian administration over Bajo Neuvo, that source states the islands as uninhabited, remote, and in dispute with several nations. It does state that serranilla is occupied though.XavierGreen (talk) 17:31, 2 December 2009 (UTC)
Sorry, I should have specified. My bad.

Information needed to characterize and map seaweed abundance and distribution will be collected in San Andres and OP/SC ($13,900). A joint research cruise to the northernmost area of the Archipelago (Serranilla and Bajo Nuevo) will be carried out by CMC, INVEMAR, and CORALINA ($53,700). The coral restoration project that will begin later in 2000 will collect and evaluate data on coral health and vulnerability with technical support from CMC, INVEMAR, and the departmental government ($150,432). IRF will continue to manage and disseminate the electronic San Andres Research list ($28,800).

Rennell435 (talk) 14:46, 3 December 2009 (UTC)

Yes, but if you look at page 53 of the document they state that the proposed projects would be untenable due to the murky political status of the islands. They state that attempts to create a marine park there would be unenforceable specifically due to the fact of a lack of control by any government.XavierGreen (talk) 15:37, 3 December 2009 (UTC)
It doesn't state anything about control by government/s. It simply states that they can't establish a marine park there because it's presently surrounded by the JR treaty area with Jamaica; hence they would have to deal with Jamaican fishermen in the area. Because of the distance from the rest of the islands (as well as the impact it would have on the treaty), they can't effectively enforce an environmentally protected area that prohibits fishing. Rennell435 (talk) 03:33, 4 December 2009 (UTC)
They being CORALINA, the environment management authority in San Andres--which is a public body. They can't petition the Navy to act on their behalf. Rennell435 (talk) 03:36, 4 December 2009 (UTC)
So CORALINA is a Colombian governmental organization then?XavierGreen (talk) 03:59, 4 December 2009 (UTC)
It's a public community organisation, it's just paid by the government. But GEF is the author of the document--they're petitioning the World Bank for funds or something. Rennell435 (talk) 04:23, 5 December 2009 (UTC)

Hey Xavier, didn't you say you wanted to change the attached notation re U.S. Govt sources on this page? Rennell435 (talk) 02:20, 8 December 2009 (UTC)

Yea, it would be silly to leave this page and the associated pages as stating there are only two government documents conserning the issue, i think you can agree ive at least proven that lol.XavierGreen (talk) 18:48, 8 December 2009 (UTC)
Definitely ;) Go for it. Rennell435 (talk) 13:45, 9 December 2009 (UTC)
I edited the mentions of American documentation. But reading over the paragraph you cited from the Coralina document, i can find no specific mention of the islands being possesions of columbia. The paragraph does mention that they are part of the San Andreas archapelago, but it does not mention that they are part of the San Andreas Department which is the administrative division.XavierGreen (talk) 08:06, 10 December 2009 (UTC)
I put where it ref'd the Department in bold... Another non-party source would be this piece on Google books. The relevant quotes being:
  1. "As Colombia was able to assert her sovereignty over Serranilla and Bajo Nuevo banks..." p2187
  2. "Having consolidated its jurisdiction on Serranilla and Low Cays (Bajo Nuevo)..." p2188
  3. "...the Joint Regime Area contains two territorial-sea exclusive circles under the sovereignty of one of the parties (Colombia)." p2180
  4. "...excluding the areas of two 450 sq. n.m. circles of Colombian territorial sea." p2181
  5. "Both are enclosed as separate Colombian territorial sea enclaves." p2182
Also, would you be adverse to the deletion of the following text (marked with line-thru) in the footnote?:
These islands are disputed with Colombia, Jamaica and Nicaragua, and are not included in the ISO list of territories. Their areas are not included in the totals. Multiple U.S. Government online resources list these islands in the context of the USMOI. According to this source, these islands are actively patrolled by the United States Coast Guard. Serranilla Bank's Beacon Cay is occupied by the Columbian Military.
Rennell435 (talk) 16:19, 10 December 2009 (UTC)
Yea, it looks better without that sentance there.XavierGreen (talk) 07:53, 11 December 2009 (UTC)
The International Maritime Boundaries reference by Charney and Alexander found in Google Books by Rennell435 looks like a good one to add to the article. While the book was published in the US, it does not appear to be defending the US position. It is tabulating all the activities of the various governments in a neutral way. EdJohnston (talk) 17:01, 15 December 2009 (UTC)
Done. Altho you might find some other sentences on which you'd like to see it as a citation; I just added it onto one in the Jamaica paragraph. Rennell435 (talk) 02:11, 17 December 2009 (UTC)
I also found photos from that DX expedition to BNB by the Hungarian and American in 2008. These were the guys that had to get permission from the Colombian government; the licence was displayed in a website posted previously above. Rennell435 (talk) 09:15, 19 December 2009 (UTC)
Alot of the DX expeditions go there on Columbian naval vessels, so I think it would be a must to get permission if they are gonna be transported by the Columbians lol. That yachter didnt have permission and was stopped by the Columbian navy at Roncador cay. I never knew how small the place was. If thats high tide then i think that place is smaller than Kingman Reef!XavierGreen (talk) 15:44, 20 December 2009 (UTC)

A possible comprimise[edit]

After thinking long and hard, i think i may have come to an agreeable solution. Since there are proposed government missions to Bajo Nuevo/Petrel Islands from both the United States government and Columbia but these have not yet happened and Jamaican fishermen are the only people that seem to regularly frequent the area, I suggest the following:

  • For the Administration box we list and link to the See Dispute Section.
  • Because the only recent occupation of the area was to repair the lighthouse in 2008, we list in a footnote to the administration box that Low Cay (the one the lighthouse is on) was last occupied by Columbia in 2008.

How does that sound? Neutral and Truthful? XavierGreen (talk) 21:46, 14 December 2009 (UTC)

I'd be open to the possibility of this change ... Although, it's quite a significant one and—as the article stands now—the changes you suggest are not so simple that they'd be limited to the infobox and footnotes...
Just to make sure I'm on the same page:
  • You're proposing to place under the Administered by heading the linked words "See Dispute section", and remove the names of any states, yes? Or are you proposing to get rid of that heading entirely, and just list the claimants?
  • Where in the infobox (on which words) will the footnote about last-known occupation be inserted?
What could make this change problematic is the fact that the Dispute section doesn't actually talk about Colombian administration—it only mentions Colombia within the context of other claimants' dealings on the issue. It also might create a problem with the rather direct assertion at the end of the introduction. Rennell435 (talk) 13:42, 15 December 2009 (UTC)
Yes I am proposing to place under the Administered by heading the linked words "See Dispute section", and remove the names of any states. The footnote would be placed right next to See Dispute Section. The section would have to be rewritten, but i think we've found enough additional information in this discussion that it would have to be rewritten anyway. Or perhaps adding a history section and putting See History section instead? The article might even be able to get to GA status with a little bit of workXavierGreen (talk) 16:35, 15 December 2009 (UTC)
Can you please list briefly what points of information that we've since found that might need to be added in a rewrite? Or, if it's a matter of the info in sources provided, just list the new information from yours and I'll do the same from mine.
I don't know about the History section thing---according to sources, the Spanish, the Central American Republic, Honduras, and Colombia have all occupied the banks at some point in history, and I haven't even seen a source that states when Colombian occupation began... Rennell435 (talk) 03:07, 17 December 2009 (UTC)
Alot of the information we covered here has already been added into the article (such as the US nationality law, continuation of jamaican claim) As for the US section the fact that the 1972 treaty does not specify Bajo Nuevo Bank in particular. It should also probably be added that yachters and amature radio operators frequent the island (i dont know where to put these since these people are from a variety of nationalities). We also need a paragraph about the columbian claim within the dispute section describing the repair of the lighthouse in 2008 and the origins of the columbian claim (inherited from spain?). I also discovered that the last sighting of the Carribean Monk Seal was at Serranilla bank, so i guess that could be added to that islands page.XavierGreen (talk) 02:32, 18 December 2009 (UTC)
I also found the name of the person who made the original claim for the US, James W. Jennett per this source. and this one

XavierGreen (talk) 02:44, 18 December 2009 (UTC)

General points to mention that are not currently covered in the article are listed below. If you have any objections to any of them--or additions--just say so. These are not the exact wordings that I am proposing to add. Hopefully we can reach an agreement on that later.

  • Area is administered as part of the department of San Andres and Providencia; naval patrols are carried out by the San Andres fleet of the Colombian Navy. 16
This should state that The area is considered by Columbia to be adminstered as part... since not all states agree or have a position at all in regards to the claim.XavierGreen (talk) 18:46, 19 December 2009 (UTC)
If we're to use that definition of administration, then we also need to amend the sentence reading: "The U.S. considers the reef to be an unorganized, unincorporated United States territory and administers it as such." Rennell435 (talk) 03:26, 22 December 2009 (UTC)
Alrighty so then The bank is considered by the US to be administered as an unorganized, unincorporated United States territory under the department of insular affairs. Would that be ok? I have no idea how Honduras and Jamaica consider themselves to administer the area (maybe they dont either lol).XavierGreen (talk) 03:44, 22 December 2009 (UTC)
Added. Rennell435 (talk) 10:22, 23 December 2009 (UTC)
  • Colombian Ministry of Defence funded the reconstruction of the lighthouse in February 2008. 2
Ok by me.XavierGreen (talk) 18:50, 19 December 2009 (UTC)
Added. Rennell435 (talk) 07:20, 23 December 2009 (UTC)
  • Lighthouse is maintained by the Colombian Maritime Authority (DIMAR), overseen by the Ministry of Defence. 3 4 (Note: This statement can remain under the Geography section.)
Ok by me. Though we should combine this with the statement above saying that it was last overhauled during the 2008 reconstruction.XavierGreen (talk) 18:50, 19 December 2009 (UTC)
Added. Rennell435 (talk) 07:20, 23 December 2009 (UTC)
  • That the actually U.S. claims either territory can be disputed: neither area is marked as being claimed on government maritime maps, 5 and the territories only appear in a portion of government documents listing U.S. insular areas.
Since the state department claims that the United states administers the islands, and they are the final departmental authority within the federal government that handles territorial issues through the department of insular affairs, i dont think there is a case to be made for this issue as virtually all recent legislation and interoffice memos regarding a listing of insular areas include both islands. Most american's don't know the names of the minor territories we do have, let alones the ones we dispute so I'd imagine there are officals in other departments that have no clue that the islands even exist let alone are claimed by the US.XavierGreen (talk) 18:46, 19 December 2009 (UTC)
Ok, we'll scratch that one then. Rennell435 (talk) 03:26, 22 December 2009 (UTC)
Scrapped. Rennell435 (talk) 07:20, 23 December 2009 (UTC)
  • Colombia argues it has claimed these territories since 1886 as part of the geographic archipelago of San Andres 6. Nicaragua disputes this, maintaining that, at the time of the Barcenas-Esguerra treaty of 1928, Colombia had not claimed either territory by name. 7
I think this is the reason why the US claim has been maintianed as well, while others in the area have been recinded. Since the provisions of the Guano islands act state that the territories claimed under the act must not be actively claimed by another state.XavierGreen (talk) 18:46, 19 December 2009 (UTC)
Cool, we can add that too then. Rennell435 (talk) 03:26, 22 December 2009 (UTC)
Added. Rennell435 (talk) 10:22, 23 December 2009 (UTC)
  • Lighthouse was constructed in May 1982. 6 (Note: Article currently gives 1980 as the date, but it's not sourced.)
I think there may have been a lighthouse before this, though i don't have an exact source as of yet.XavierGreen (talk) 18:46, 19 December 2009 (UTC)
Added. Rennell435 (talk) 07:20, 23 December 2009 (UTC)
  • The waters immediately surrounding the two features were excluded from the JRA because of their status under international law as territorial waters, and thus, cannot be under the jurisdiction of any other state. 8
The JRA does not state which nation the territorial waters belong to does it not?XavierGreen (talk) 18:46, 19 December 2009 (UTC)
Sorry, this is Colombia's reason why they wanted it excluded from the agreement. Rennell435 (talk) 03:26, 22 December 2009 (UTC)
Added. Rennell435 (talk) 07:20, 23 December 2009 (UTC)
  • Honduras has not officially renounced its claim over Serranilla Bank--it is still listed in the Honduran Constitution as part of its sovereign territory.
Ok by meXavierGreen (talk) 18:46, 19 December 2009 (UTC)
Added. Rennell435 (talk) 09:00, 23 December 2009 (UTC)
  • Multiple research expeditions to the banks, including a coral restoration project, were carried out in 2000 by CMC, INVEMAR, CORALINA, and the government of San Andres and Providencia. 9
Did the research expedition actually take place? The source just proposes the mission.XavierGreen (talk) 18:46, 19 December 2009 (UTC)
Oh, I don't know. If proposals don't count, then we'll forget that. Can't be bothered to look for a report. Rennell435 (talk) 03:26, 22 December 2009 (UTC)
It can still be included just change it to this, "Multiple research expeditions to the banks, including a coral restoration project, were proposed in 2000 by CMC, INVEMAR, CORALINA, and the government of San Andres and Providencia."XavierGreen (talk) 04:03, 22 December 2009 (UTC)
Scrapped. Nah, we'll leave this until there's more information available. Rennell435 (talk) 07:20, 23 December 2009 (UTC)
  • The banks were also excluded from proposed marine protected areas in the archipelago, as well as the Sunflower World Biosphere Reserve, due to the existence of the surrounding economic-based JRA with Jamaica.9
Ok by meXavierGreen (talk) 18:46, 19 December 2009 (UTC)
Scrapped. Not really relevant until there's a Biology section or whatever. Rennell435 (talk) 07:20, 23 December 2009 (UTC)
  • Both territories were claimed for the U.S. by James W. Jennett under the Guano Islands Act. 10
Ok by meXavierGreen (talk) 18:46, 19 December 2009 (UTC)
Added. Rennell435 (talk) 07:20, 23 December 2009 (UTC)
  • The JRA treaty was signed 12 November 1993; entered into force 14 March 1994. 11
Ok by me.XavierGreen (talk) 18:46, 19 December 2009 (UTC)
Added. Rennell435 (talk) 07:20, 23 December 2009 (UTC)
  • When the 1986 fishing agreement between Jamaica and Colombia expired, Colombia decided not to renew it, by virtue of Diplomatic Note No. DM 00851 of 15 August 1986. [11] (Note: I'm just quoting the source; I don't think we need to mention the DM#.)
We should also mention that the Jamaican claim we defacto deactivated through the length of the treaty, and that it was reactivated when it expired.XavierGreen (talk) 18:46, 19 December 2009 (UTC)
Added. Rennell435 (talk) 07:20, 23 December 2009 (UTC)
  • Critics in Jamaica pointed to the fact that the fishery agreement of 1986 was a de facto recognition of Colombian sovereignty in both areas. [11]
Ok by me.XavierGreen (talk) 18:46, 19 December 2009 (UTC)
Added. Rennell435 (talk) 07:20, 23 December 2009 (UTC)
  • To add onto the currently existing statement: "However, the territorial waters immediately surrounding the cays themselves were excluded from the zone of joint-control." ..., and were defined in the chart attached to the treaty as "Colombia's territorial sea in Serranilla and Bajo Nuevo". [11]
In the fishing treaty right?XavierGreen (talk) 18:46, 19 December 2009 (UTC)
No, in the JRA treaty. There's an explanation on p2192 of the book preview. Rennell435 (talk) 03:26, 22 December 2009 (UTC)
Added. Rennell435 (talk) 07:20, 23 December 2009 (UTC)

Rennell435 (talk) 09:49, 19 December 2009 (UTC)

We should also add the pending legislation in the US congress concerning the surveying of the islands for resources.XavierGreen (talk) 18:46, 19 December 2009 (UTC)
Ok, that sounds fine. Rennell435 (talk) 03:26, 22 December 2009 (UTC)

I've added most of the points above, but if I'm to move the Colombia paragraph to the dispute section, I'd like to stick with the old useage of "administration"... as in, "Colombia administers the area as part of the department of San Andres and Providencia." It doesn't allude to indisputable control, it merely means that that's how it incorporates the territory into the country. And seeing as it does pass legislation concerning the bank by name, I don't think it can be disputed that there is active administration of the bank... And then in the U.S. paragraph, we can state that "The U.S. administers the reef as an unorganized, unincorporated United States territory." ...seeing as it's passing legislation on the territory. Is that okay? The word "considers" is just too weak and it alludes to pretending or officially-but-not-in-practice, which is not correct when you have people actively employed in the area. Rennell435 (talk) 07:20, 23 December 2009 (UTC)

Thats perfectly fine, as long as the styling is used uniformly with all the claimants then it should be ok. Have you found anything regarding how Nicaragua, Honduras, and Jamaica adminsiter the islands? I can seem to find any information at all in there regard. Its quite possible that they aren't formally part of any administrative division and are simply federal land.XavierGreen (talk) 07:32, 23 December 2009 (UTC)
I'm afraid I don't. I think most of them would just put them under control of the Navies or Coast Guards, and administered directly by the central government, altho—as neither of us have found any implemented legislature regarding the area—I think it's better to have it left out. Rennell435 (talk) 09:00, 23 December 2009 (UTC)

Plain Language (English) Please[edit]

What is "ISO 3166-1 alpha-2 code UM ISO 3166-2:UM ccTLD .um ISO 3166 code PU MI JT WK"? Drop the ugga-booga code language; (move to articles on those islands, if you must).

Also, since these are "U.S. Minor Outling Islands", perhaps the international reference should be sunk or striken and United States code of federal regulations substituted, (for one example, 48 CFR Chapter 1, Part 2, Subpart 2.1, Section 2.101 Definitions). — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:12, 29 January 2014 (UTC)

infobox n/a's[edit]

There seems to be no good reason for the "n/a"'s in the infobox. Density can be calculated from population and area, and both are given. Total GDP can be calculated from GDP per capita and population, though the per capita figure should be calculated from total GDP. There should be no way to have a per capita figure, if total is not known... (talk) 19:33, 22 December 2014 (UTC)

There should be no infobox here at all, the US Minor Outlying islands is not in actuality a territory of the united states, rather the islands groups themselves are each territories.XavierGreen (talk) 20:45, 14 June 2016 (UTC)

External links modified[edit]

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What is the source of the areas given? They do not match the figures listed in the individual island articles, nor do they match CIA figures. --Lasunncty (talk) 07:40, 3 April 2017 (UTC)


Palmyra Atoll, Jarvis Island, Midway Islands, Baker Island, Johnston Atoll, Navassa Island, Howland Island, Kingman Reef and Wake Island are listed as both Territories of the United States and as United States Minor Outlying Islands. Shouldn't they only be listed one of them?--Wyn.junior (talk) 23:14, 23 May 2018 (UTC)

You've posted the same comment on two different talk pages. Shouldn't one of them be removed? - BilCat (talk) 01:18, 24 May 2018 (UTC)
No. These questions sometimes go unanswered.--Wyn.junior (talk) 22:50, 24 May 2018 (UTC)
Rather than post a duplicate message, you should link to the original discussion, all the replys will be in one place. - BilCat (talk) 19:25, 25 May 2018 (UTC)

Requesting article name change[edit]

This article should be named Uninhabited Territories of the United States.--Wyn.junior (talk) 22:30, 29 May 2018 (UTC)

Please provide some proof that the new name is the more common than the existing one. - BilCat (talk) 02:16, 30 May 2018 (UTC)
No guarantee that they all will remain uninhabited, existing title covers both possibilities Lyndaship (talk) 08:10, 30 May 2018 (UTC)