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U.S. And Mexico Reach Agreement On Disputed Territory In Gulf Of Mexico

LADB Article ID: 53860
Category/Department: Mexico
Date: 2000-06-07
By: LADB Staff

After two years of difficult negotiations, the US and Mexican governments agreed to divide a disputed 17,790-sq km zone in the Gulf of Mexico. The area, known as the Western Gap or doughnut hole, is thought to hold some deep-water reserves of crude oil and natural gas, although the amounts are uncertain. Mexico and the US began discussions on the topic in April 1998, after the US Senate ratified a 1998 treaty that recognized the territorial limit of the disputed area (see SourceMex, 1997-11-05, 1998-04-22). The new agreement, announced in Washington by Foreign Relations Secretary Rosario Green and Energy Secretary Luis Tellez, gives Mexico control of 62% of the disputed area. The division was determined by measuring distances from each country's coast, giving Mexico 10,600 sq km and the US 6,594 sq km. The accord, which will become formal at a signing ceremony scheduled for June 9, must still be ratified by the Mexican and US Senates.

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