Pheasant Island is world’s oldest condominium that sits in Bidasoa River and shifts its sovereignty every six months, between France & Spain.
What Is Condominium
A condominium is an International law that states joint sovereignty over a territory by several states or in other words concurrent dominion. Historically there have been several condominium but only few did survive for this long. The success of such an association requires cooperation of all participative states, and that’s pretty difficult to ensure over s long period of time.
Pheasant Island is the oldest surviving condominium and it is the only place where sovereignty isn’t shared simultaneously but alternately. For a period of six months, Pheasant Island is under French territory and for the other six months it is in Spain.
Historical & Peaceful
In 1965, a Treaty of the Pyrenees was signed by the delegates of France and Spain to officially cease Thirty Years of war between them. Both the nations signed this peace treaty on this Island and actually huge monolith structure is still present embossed with the guidelines. The delegates of both the nation meets at the same place after every six months to exchange documents and transfer sovereignty to other nation.
The treaty defines the new boundaries for the nations that runs from Pyrenees mountains following Bidasoa river to Bay of Biscay in the Atlantic Ocean. So the Treaty of Pyrenees carved an entirely different type of arrangement between France & Spain, and fixed the center of river Bidasoa as the border of separation.
Pheasant Island Is Shrinking
The sad news is the peace symbolic Island is shrinking. Originally the Island encompasses 6820 Square Kilometers of area, which is shrinking in size due to powerful streams.