Tuesday, December 01, 2009
Antarctic treaty - December 1, 1959
The main treaty was opened for signature on December 1, 1959, and officially entered into force on June 23, 1961. The original signatories were the 12 countries active in Antarctica during the International Geophysical Year (IGY) of 1957-58 and willing to accept a US invitation to the conference at which the treaty was negotiated. These countries were the ones with significant interests in Antarctica at the time: Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Chile, France, Japan, New Zealand, Norway, South Africa, the Soviet Union, the United Kingdom and the United States. Among them, the signatories had established over 50 Antarctic stations for the IGY. The treaty was a diplomatic expression of the operational and scientific cooperation that had been achieved "on the ice".