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Someone Has A Reasonable Solution For This Tiny, Silly Island

Hey Denmark, let's just share.

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Hans Island is a wee 1.3 km-square, uninhabited knoll that sits right in the middle of the water between Canada's Ellesmere Island and Greenland. Right in the middle of the border. Right in the middle of an otherwise cordial relationship.

Both Denmark and Canada have laid claim to the island but without any formal agreement both countries have mostly just been passive aggressive about the whole thing.


Like flag-strewn photo ops and — rumour has it — leaving behind bottles of country-appropriate alcohol.

But now an academic has an uncommonly sane, rational idea: just share the damn thing.

Canadian and Danish academics — including the University's of British Columbia's Michael Byers — are proposing that Hans Island be turned into a condominium.


And no, not like a residential building. More like a shared island that's co-managed by both Canada and Denmark, reports The Canadian Press.

According to the report, day-to-day duties could be taken care of by local Inuit or the whole thing could be made into one rocky, remote park.

The two countries have generally agreed to politely disagree on Hans Island. But we can probably all agree on this: we shouldn't let a little slice of land tear us apart.

Lauren Strapagiel is Managing Editor for BuzzFeed News and is based in Toronto, Canada.

Contact Lauren Strapagiel at

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