Le territoire des Terres australes et antarctiques françaises, constitue depuis 1955, un territoire d’outre-mer de la France, composé de trois districts insulaires du sud de l’océan Indien (les îles Kerguelen, les îles Crozet et les îles Saint-Paul et Amsterdam) et d’une portion du continent antarctique : la Terre Adélie.
L’application du traité de l’Antarctique, dont la France est signataire, place cependant la Terre Adélie dans une situation particulière. La souveraineté française, qui n’est pas reconnue par les autres nations, est exercée de manière limitée et conforme au Traité.
Une loi de 2007 a ajouté un cinquième district aux TAAF, celui tropical des Îles Éparses (l’île Tromelin, l’île Europa, l’atoll Bassas da India, les îles Glorieuses, l’île Juan de Nova) précédemment administrées séparément depuis la Réunion (bien que ces îles n’aient jamais fait partie de ce département d’outre-mer).
The Territory of the French Southern and Antarctic Lands consist of a group of volcanic islands in the southern Indian Ocean, south of Africa, approximately equidistant between ► Madagascar and ► Réunion, ► Antarctica and ► Australia (This part alone is defined as the French Southern Territories internationally) and the Adélie Land (French sovereignty exercises over this part of the Antarctica continent according to the Antarctic Treaty System).
The Scattered islands in the Indian Ocean under French sovereignty became in 2007 the fifth district of the territory and comprises four small coral islands and an atoll in the Indian Ocean. They have no permanent population. Three of the islands groups, Glorieuses, Juan de Nova and Europa, as well as the Bassas da India atoll lie in the Mozambique Channel west of Madagascar, while the fourth island, Tromelin, is about 220 miles east of Madagascar. In the same area lie ► Heard Island and McDonald Islands (which are not part of this French territory but are governed by Australia).
French Southern and Antarctic Lands
Territory of the French Southern and Antarctic Lands
This section holds a short summary of the history of the area of present-day the French Southern and Antarctic Lands, illustrated with maps, including historical maps of former countries and empires that included present-day the French Southern and Antarctic Lands.
The islands that form nowadays the French Southern and Antarctic Lands are aqcuired by France between 1772 and 1843. France adds these islands and the claim on Antartica to Madagascar. France separates the French Southern and Antarctic Lands in 1955 from Madagascar.
Glorioso Island became a French possession in 1892, followed in 1897 by Bassas da India, Europa Island and Juan de Nova Island. In 1954 Tromelin Island came under French control. Since 2005 the islands have been administered on behalf of the French state by the senior administrator of the French Southern and Antarctic Territories. The islands had previously been under the administration of the prefect of Réunion since the independence of Madagascar in 1960. France maintains a military garrison of around 14 troops on each of the islands in the Mozambique Channel, which are claimed by Madagascar. The Glorieuses islands are also claimed by the Comoros, while Mauritius claims Tromelin island.
This section holds copies of original general maps more than 70 years old.
Map drawn during the Kerguelen expedition of James Cook in 1784
The Scattered Islands (one district)
This district is the most recently added one (in 2007) within the French Southern and Antarctic Lands. Location of the Scattered Islands:
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