In 1963 Denmark was the first mainland state to surround an overseas archipelago, the , with a set of straight . The archipelago has a roughly triangular shape and the two long sides, measuring 60 nm and 44 nm in length, do not conform to the general direction of the coasts of the outermost islands. In the North Sea, there exists a comprehensive network of continental shelf boundaries – something that can be attributed to the positive and close relationships between the littoral states as well as their urgent desire to gain access to seabed resources. Chronologically, delimitation activity was at its most intense in the period 1965 to 1972. colleagues distinguishes between two types of delimitation. Firstly, those delimitations which were based on the principlecontained in Article 6 of the of 1958 and were largely concluded in the period 1965 to 1968 shortly after the Convention on the Continental Shelf came into force in June 1964. colleagues places the following agreements in this category: and the (1965 and 1978), Denmark and Norway (1965 and 1979), Norway and Sweden (1968), Denmark and the UK (1966 and 1971), The and the UK (1965 and 1971). In the Atlantic approaches to the British Isles and northern Europe, including the Irish Sea, southward to the Iberian Peninsula there exist five major boundary situations. From north to south these are Denmark (on behalf of the Faroe Islands)-UK; Ireland (Eire)-UK, in two sections westward between Ireland and Scotland and southwest through the Irish Sea and beyond; France-UK through the ; between France and through the Bay of Biscay; and, between Portugal and Spain. All of these maritime boundaries are now subject to bilateral agreements. Four states, Denmark (on behalf of the Faroe Islands), Iceland, Ireland and the UK, have made extensive claims to continental shelf in the Rockall Plateau region lying more than 200 nm from all four states. Denmark and Iceland both made their provisional and unilateral claims in 1985 following multiple, and competing, continental shelf designations bon the part of the UK and Ireland in the period 1974 to 1977. There is considerable overlap between these claims with two large areas of trilateral overlap (Denmark/Iceland/UK and Denmark/ Iceland/Ireland) and three areas of bilateral overlap (Denmark/Iceland (in two sections), Iceland/Ireland and Iceland/UK) The maritime boundary agreement between the Faroe Islands authorities and the UK was finally signed, after over 21 years of intermittent negotiations, on 18 May 1999. The UK's 200 nm fisheries limit claim was based in large part on small islands located north of the Scottish mainland such as the Flannan Islands, Sule Skerry, Rona and Sula Sgeir whilst the Faroe Islands claimed was based on the system around the islands. The Faroe Islands ignored thesmall Scottish islands in its claim while the UK ignored the Faroe Islands baselines in its claim, resulting in . The agreement defines separate continental shelf and fishery zone boundaries, with a…

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