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Opinion

Northwest Passage: status quo persists

By Andrea Charron      

Agreeing to disagree has worked well for decades and decades; there is still no compelling reason for this stance to change. Pompeo is simply restating, perhaps loudly and brashly, the status quo.

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, centre, pictured June 13, 2018, arriving at the Osan Air Base, Republic of Korea, June 13, 2018, where he met with senior South Korean and Japanese officials to discuss the U.S.-South Korea alliance. Photograph courtesy of OSAN Air Base

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced in early May 2019 that Canada’s claims to the Northwest Passage were illegitimate. While perhaps less than tactfully expressed, this is the U.S.’s official view of the Northwest Passage. Canada’s perspective is different of course, but the impasse of perspectives is long-standing. There are still no conditions or circumstances compelling a change in either position to date.

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