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The islands, which have large bird and seal populations, lie approximately 1,000 km east of the Falkland Islands and have been under British administration since 1908 - except for a brief period in 1982 when Argentina occupied them. Grytviken, on South Georgia, was a 19th and early 20th century whaling station. Famed explorer Ernest SHACKLETON stopped there in 1914 en route to his ill-fated attempt to cross Antarctica on foot. He returned some 20 months later with a few companions in a small boat and arranged a successful rescue for the rest of his crew, stranded off the Antarctic Peninsula. He died in 1922 on a subsequent expedition and is buried in Grytviken. Today, the station houses scientists from the British Antarctic Survey. Recognizing the importance of preserving the marine stocks in adjacent waters, the UK, in 1993, extended the exclusive fishing zone from 12 nm to 200 nm around each island.


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Government

Country name
Conventional long form
South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands
Conventional short form
South Georgia and South Sandwich Islands
Abbreviation SGSSI

Dependency status
Overseas territory of the UK, also claimed by Argentina; administered from the Falkland Islands by a commissioner, who is concurrently governor of the Falkland Islands, representing Queen ELIZABETH II

Legal system
The laws of the UK where applicable apply; the senior magistrate from the Falkland Islands presides over the Magistrates Court

Diplomatic representation in the us
None (overseas territory of the UK, also claimed by Argentina)

Diplomatic representation from the us
None (overseas territory of the UK, also claimed by Argentina)

Flag description
Blue, with the flag of the UK in the upper hoist-side quadrant and the South Georgia and South Sandwich Islands coat of arms centered on the outer half of the flag; the coat of arms features a shield with a golden lion rampant, holding a torch; the shield is supported by a fur seal on the left and a Macaroni penguin on the right; a reindeer appears above the crest, and below the shield on a scroll is the motto LEO TERRAM PROPRIAM PROTEGAT (Let the Lion Protect its Own Land)); the lion with the torch represents the UK and discovery; the background of the shield, blue and white estoiles, are found in the coat of arms of James Cook, discoverer of the islands; all the outer supporting animals represented are native to the islands


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  South Georgia And The South Sandwich Islands [ United Kingdom ] (Overseas Territory):


  GPS points from South Georgia And The South Sandwich Islands [ United Kingdom ] (Overseas Territory)

Skrap Skerries South Georgia And The South Sandwich Islands (general)

Verdant Island South Georgia And The South Sandwich Islands (general)

Spit Point South Georgia And The South Sandwich Islands (general)

Stromnes Bay South Georgia And The South Sandwich Islands (general)

Breakwind Ridge South Georgia And The South Sandwich Islands (general)

Punta Penon South Georgia And The South Sandwich Islands (general)

Hauptinsel South Georgia And The South Sandwich Islands (general)

Mount Paget South Georgia And The South Sandwich Islands (general)




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