Bolivia unfurls ′world′s biggest flag′ to demand access to sea from Chile | News | DW | 10.03.2018
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Bolivia unfurls 'world's biggest flag' to demand access to sea from Chile

Protesting Bolivians have waved a flag that stretched more than 200 kilometers (124 miles). The long blue ribbon is the official flag of the landlocked nation's navy.

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'World's biggest flag'

Tens of thousands of Bolivians held a nearly 200-km long (124 miles) bright blue flag on Saturday in a show of support for their landlocked country's demand that it be given a sovereign access to the sea.

The so-called "flag of maritime revindication" stretched like a long blue ribbon between the towns Oruro and Apacheta, on the outskirts of capital La Paz.

The display of patriotism comes just days before Bolivia is due to present its case for sovereign access to Chile's Pacific coast at the International Court of Justice (ICJ).

Read more: Measuring media freedom in Bolivia

Maritime dispute

Bolivia wants to regain access to the sea, which it lost to Chile in a late 19th century war. The country, which maintains a navy, wants a corridor to the sea to boost its exports of natural gas and minerals.

"We'll show the International Court of Justice and all people on the planet that our cause is just, reasonable and sound," President Evo Morales said after flying over the flag in a helicopter.

Bolivian officials say the Bolivian Navy ensign held by participants on Saturday is the world's biggest — or at least longest flag.

The ICJ will start hearing the case on March 19.

ap/aw (AP, Reuters)

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