Chagos Islanders Sue the Queen £1 Billion for Lost Fishing Rights

The Chagossian people have sued the British Crown for lost fishing rights.  They are seeking  £1 Billion in restitution in the British Indian Ocean Territory Supreme Court, the case is Nourrice and Prosper et al. v. Her Majesty The Queen.

British Indian Ocean Territory (Chagos Archipelago) is best known for the top secret US naval base on Diego Garcia Island and the forced deportation of the original Afro-Creole inhabitants from the Chagos Archipelago (1967-1973) and subsequent apartheid laws barring them from returning home.

The United Nations General Assembly, African Union, and International Court of Justice found the Britain’s deportation of the Chagos Islanders 50 years ago and continued military occupation of the Chagos Archipelago (British Indian Ocean Territory) is a serious violation of international law, the Chagossians are still banned from the territory by apartheid laws and US and British military forces.

The Chagossians are suing British colonial administration for £1 Billion (BIOT) Pounds to compensate them for lost fishing rights.  The Chagos Archipelago is one of the world’s prime fisheries rich in tuna, shell and game fish.  Indigenous fishing rights are recognized by the UN, African Union and many countries with native peoples including the United States, Canada, and Australia.

According to Dr. Jonathan Levy, the international lawyer representing the Chagos islanders:

“There is no doubt the Chagos Archipelago fishing rights have both monetary and cultural value and the Chagossians are barred from even entering the territory’s waters. The colonial administration has the power to issue the currency requested and has no excuse for what amounts to continuing theft of indigenous property and rights.”

The case is Nourrice and Prosper et al v. Her Majesty The Queen.

Copyright © Jon Levy

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