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Thread: Greater and Lesser Tunbs

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    Senior Member RAMBO's Avatar
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    Oct 2015

    Greater and Lesser Tunbs

    Greater Tunb and Lesser Tunb are two small islands in the eastern Persian Gulf, close to the Strait of Hormuz. They lie at 26°15′N 55°16′E and 26°14′N 55°08′E respectively, some 12 kilometers from each other and 20 kilometers south of the Iranian island of Qeshm. The islands are administered by Iran as part of its province of Hormozgan, but are also claimed by UAE as a territory of the Emirate of Ras al-Khaimah.[2][3][4]

    Greater Tunb has a surface of 10.3 km². It is known for its red soil. There are conflicting descriptions about its population: While some sources state there are between a few dozen and a few hundred inhabitants,[5] others describe the island as having no native civilian population.[6] There is reported to be an Iranian garrison and naval station, a fish storage facility and a red-soil mine. Lesser Tunb has a surface of 2 km² and is uninhabited with the exception of a small airfield, harbor, and entrenched Iranian military unit.

    In the following decades, the issue remained a source of friction between the Arab states and Iran. The Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Gulf repeatedly declared support for the UAE claims. Bilateral talks between the UAE and Iran in 1992 failed. The UAE have attempted to bring the dispute before the International Court of Justice,[10] but Iran refuses to do so. Tehran says the islands always belonged to it as it had never renounced possession of the islands, and that they are an integral part of Iranian territory.[11] The emirate of Ras al-Khaimah argue that the islands were under the control of Qasimi sheikhs, a branch of which administered the port of Bandar Lengeh for the Persian government from ca. 1789 to 1887,[7] and UAE as the successor to the tribal patrimony of the tribe, may inherit their rights. Iran counters by stating that the local Qasimi rulers during a crucial part of the previous centuries were actually based on the Iranian, not the Arab, coast, and had thus has been Persian subjects.[12] UAE always refer to these islands as "occupied".[13]
    Last edited by RAMBO; 10-29-2015 at 12:00 PM.

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