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Term Contiguous Zone

Geographical area which extends from the outer limit of the territorial sea to 12 nautical miles towards the high seas.

The contiguous zone is a band on which the country has the right to patrol, so as to prevent violations of customs, health, immigration, or fiscal regulations in its territory or territorial sea.  The State may exert limited control in its contiguous zone, in order to prevent or punish “offenses against its customs and immigration regulations, or health laws and regulations within its territory or territorial sea”.  These waters serve as borders in every sense, and open the possibility for development.  They also serve as a space in which the State’s presence is fundamental for its security against the threat of illegal immigration, drug trafficking, and every other type of criminal behavior.  

Additional Information
GraphicZonas marítimas acorde a la Convención de las Naciones Unidas sobre el Derecho del Mar
Topic  Protected areasLegal and Institutional