INDIAN OCEAN: No, Man, It's My Island

Three nations quarrel mightily over tiny Tromelin

Of all the islands that dot the Indian Ocean, few could be more obscure than Tromelin. Understandably so. It is a tear-shaped chunk of sand less than one mile long and 700 yards wide. Its flora consists of four coconut palms and some nondescript bushes that submerge whenever the sea turns rough. Nonetheless, Tromelin has become the focus of a heated political controversy. Three nations claim it: France, which currently controls it, Mauritius and Madagascar (formerly Malagasy). Their feud may have to be resolved by...

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