Hans Ø

A few years ago I stumbled upon a post on foreignpolicy.com
regarding a conflict between Canada and Denmark over a small island between Greenland and Canada’s North, the Hans Island. I decided to do some research of my own regarding the geo-political climate of the relations between Canada and Denmark – who currently manage the Foreign Affairs of Greenland – regarding the Hans Island dispute. This is my first part of a piece on the story of North Arctic sovereignty.

Greenland is an emerging semi-autonomous state aided by Denmark, which is in the unique position of being next to North America but also relatively close to Europe. The nearest bordering country to Greenland is Canada, a relatively young state that is facing many of the same challenges as Denmark and Greenland are presently challenged with in the North Arctic regarding notions of sovereignty and how best to deal with territorial claims amid an environment rich in resources, yet presently frigid. As the ice and glaciers thaw collaboration among states in a meaningful and orderly manner will be expected to display state maturity and achieve common goals.



Next up: Hans Ø an introduction to North Arctic sovereignty


  1. The piece that grabbed my attention a while back was the post by Thomas Ricks, found at: http://ricks.foreignpolicy.com/posts/2012/04/13/denmark_and_canada_avoid_war
  2. Hans Ø is the Danish name for Hans Island.

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