THE CONCEPT OF EQUIDISTANT PRINCIPLE TO DELIMITATE CONTINENTAL SHELF ZONE
Since along time the Arabian Gulf region has witnessed competition on it, whether by the major dominated countries, or by the riparian countries on the Gulf itself. The reasons of competence may be political, economic, military, or legal to determine the international water borders of its countries. The special boundary problem is the limitation of the continental shelf among Iraq, Kuwait and Iran, where the maritime areas are still not well defined. These states are still not done any agreement between them concerned the water borders. From the point of international law the rights of these States depend on the subject of the natural extension of international sovereignty on the waters of the territorial sea and continental shelf. The continental shelf area Acquires major importance in various subjects such political, economic, strategic and military. These subjects led to a conflict of interest among the coastal States, depending on their geographical situation. So that this situation led to different legal points of view on how to limit the borders among these states. The right of sovereignty, and its natural extension and how to limit the maritime areas that include the seabed and its outer space may also be one of the reasons that hinder the process of defining the maritime boundary between Iraq, Kuwait and Iran. In fact there are different criteria for limitation of the boundaries of the continental shelf defined by the Law of the Sea 1982, including the nature of the area, or the distance required to determine them. However, the difficulty lies in the process of delimiting the continental shelf between neighboring States that do not have good faith in reaching the delimitation of the continental shelf. The Convention has Explained how to delimitate the boundaries of the continental shelf adjacent to the territories of two neighboring States through agreement between them, or through the process of applying the equidistant principle, or midline from base points defined to delimitate the territorial sea.
Keywords: Equidistant Principle, Shelf Zone.