territorial waters


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territorial waters pl (plural only)

  1. (politics, geography) A country's inland lakes and waterways as well as the portion of its coastal oceans, seas, or other adjoining bodies of water considered to fall within the political boundaries and legal jurisdiction of that country.
    • 1880 Dec. 11, "The Fortune Bay Outrage: Lord Granville's Letter to Minister Lowell," New York Times (retrieved 22 June 2012):
      Her Majesty's Government do not interpret these expressions in any sense derogatory to the sovereign authority of Great Britain in the territorial waters of Newfoundland.
    • 1909, Bram Stoker, The Lady of the Shroud, Book 7:
      You are not merely within territorial waters, but you have invaded a national port.
    • 2009 Nov. 10, Bill Powell, "Before Obama's Visit, a New Clash Between Koreas," Time:
      According to the South Korean joint chiefs of staff, a North Korean gunboat ventured about a mile into what Seoul claims is its territorial waters.

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