Paper title:
  ‘Beverages’ Versus ‘Flags’: A Comparative Analysis of the Disputes over Hans Island and the Imia/Kardak Islets through Conflict Theory
Published in:
Issue 2 (Vol. 27) / 2021
Publishing date:
Adnan Dal
Referring to the constructive and destructive pillars of the conflict theory, the article aims to demonstrate that, despite the apparent similarities between the two land claim disputes, they are fundamentally different. In this regard, after analyzing the elements that define both conflicts, the paper presents the Hans Island dispute as a constructive antagonism and the Imia / Kardak Islets crisis as a destructive one. Although the replacement of symbolic drinks and flags characterizes both conflicts, the first case indicates the importance of geo-economic aspects, while the second clearly illustrates geopolitical competition. The authors see the Hans Island dispute as a means of maintaining the status quo and the Imia / Kardak Islands as a way of changing the state of affairs. By doing so, the paper tries to present how the circumstances in which the two conflicts evolved proved to be favourable or constructive in one case and unfavourable, respectively destructive in the other.
Hans Island, Imia/Kardak Islets, Conflict theory, Constructive conflict, Destructive conflict.

1. Ayman S. Gülden, The Kardak (Imia) Crisis and Turkish-Greek Relations, in “Helenic Studies”, Vol. 9, No. 2, 2001, pp. 49-72.
2. Baldacchino Godfrey, Solution Protocols to Festering Island Disputes, Routledge, 2017.
3. Bayar Murat, Kotelis Andreas, Democratic Peace or Hegemonic Stability? The Imia / Kardak Case, in “Turkish Studies”, Vol. 15, No. 2, 2014.
4. Bender Jeremy, 2 Countries have been fighting over an uninhabited by leaving each other bottles of alcohol for over 3 decades, in “Business Insider”. Jan 10, 2016, in
5. Burton W. John, Peace Theory: Preconditions of Disarmament, New York, Alfred A. Knopf, 1962.
6. Byers Michael, Creative thinking on sovereignty, “Policy Options 35”, March 3, 2014,
7. Byers Michael, International Law and the Arctic: Cambridge Studies, in International and Comparative Law, New York, Cambridge University Press, 2013.
8. Canada and the Kingdom of Denmark (with Greenland) Announce the Establishment of a Joint Task Force on Boundary Issues, May 23, 2018, in newsdisplaypage/?newsID=E624A67D-1317-4AC6-8F28-30F5234E9759
9. Delimitation Treaty (December 17, 1973), in /UNTS/Volume%20950/volume-950-I-13550-English.pdf
10. Denk Erdem, Disputed Islets and Rocks in the Aegean Sea, in “The Turkish Yearbook”, 29, 1999, pp. 131-155.
11. Deutsch Morton, Cooperation and Competition, in M. Deutsch, P. T. Coleman, E. C. Marcus (Eds.), The Handbook of Conflict Resolution. Theory and Practice, John Wiley & Sons, Inc, 2nd ed., 2006.
12. Deutsch Morton, Cooperation and Conflict: A Personal Perspective on the History of the Social Psychological Study of Conflict Resolution, in M. A. West, D. Tjosvold, K. G. Smith (Eds.), The Essentials of Teamworking: International Perspectives, John Wiley & Sons Inc., 2005.
13. Deutsch Morton, The Resolution of Conflict: Constructive and Destructive Processes, New Haven, Yale University Press, 1973.
14. Dipla Charitini, Kostakos Georgios, Ziogas Nikolas, The Status of the Greek Islets “Imia”, in
15. Galtung Johan, Peace by Peaceful Means. Peace and Conflict, Development and Civili-zation, London, Sage, 1996.
16. Galtung Johan, Peace Studies and Conflict Resolution. The Need for Transdisciplinar-ity, in “Transcultural Psychiatry”, 2010, Vol. 47, No. 1, pp. 20-32.
17. Georgiades A. Emily, The Imia Islets. A Beginning to the Maritime Delimitation of the Aegean Sea Dispute, in “Ocean and Coastal Law”, 2011, Vol. 17, No. 1, p. 103-126.
18. Heraclides Alexis, The Greek-Turkish Conflict in the Aegean. Imagined Enemies, Houndmills, Basingstoke, New York/Hampshire: Palgrave Macmillan: 2010.
19. Hickok R. Michael, Falling Toward War in the Aegean. A Case Study of the Imia / Kardak Affair, in war_in_the_agean.pdf
20. Hickok R. Michael, The Imia-Kardak Affair, 1995-96. A Case of inad-vertent conflict, in “European Security”, 1998, Vol. 7, No. 4, pp. 118-136, 09662839808407386.
21. Huebert Rob, Return of the “Vikings”. The Canadian-Danish dispute over Hans Island. New challenges for control of the Canadian North, in F. Berkes, R. Huebert, H. Fast, M. Manseau, A. Diduck (Eds.), Breaking Ice: Renewable resource and ocean management in the Canadian North, Calgary, University of Calgary Press, 2005, pp. 319-336.
22. Kostarella Ioanna, Framing the Other. Turkey in the Greek Press, in “GMJ: Mediterra-nean Edition”, Spring 2007, Vol. 2, No. 1, pp. 23-32.
23. Koukis Theodore, Kelman Ilan, Ganapati N. Emel, Greece-Turkey Disaster Diplomacy from Disaster Risk Reduction, in “International Journal of Disaster Risk Reduction”, 2016, Vol. 17, pp. 24-32.
24. Levin Dan, Canada and Denmark Fight Over Island With Whisky and Schnapps, in “The New York Times”,
25. McGwin Kevin, Denmark, Canada agree to settle the Hans Island dispute, May 24, 2018, in
26. Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Greece, Turkish Claims, in issues-of-greek-turkish-relations/relevant-documents/turkish-claims.html
27. Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Turkey, The Kardak Dispute, in
28. Ministry of Foreign Affairs of France, Science Diplomacy for France. Report 2013.
29. Mitchell R. Michael, Arctic Sovereignty. Using the Hans Island Dispute as a Diploma-tic Laboratory, in “Conflict Analysis”, 2014, in
30. Moustakis Fotios, Sheehan Michael, Greek Security Policy after the Cold War, in “Contemporary Security Policy”, 2000, Vol. 21, No. 3, /13523260008404270, pp. 95-115.
31. Ozguness Neslihan, Terzis Georgios, Constraints and Remedies for Journalists Re-porting National Conflict: the case of Greece and Turkey, in “Journalism Studies”, 2000, Vol. 1, No. 3, pp. 405-426,, pp. 405-426.
32. Rapoport Anatol, Conflict in Man-Made Environment, Harmondsworth, Eng.; Balti-more, Penguin Books, 1974.
33. Rumelili, Bahar, Transforming Conflicts on EU Borders: The Case of Greek-Turkish Relations, in “Journal of Common Market Studies”, 2007, Vol. 45, No. 1, pp. 105-126.
34. Sandole J. D. Dennis, A Comprehensive Mapping of Conflict and Conflict Resolution. A Three Pillar Approach, in “Peace and Conflict Studies”, 1998, Vol. 5, No. 2, Article 4.
35. Sandole J.D. Dennis, Paradigms, Theories, and Metaphors in Conflict and Conflict Re-solution. Coherence or Confusion?, in D.J.D. Sandole, H. van der Merwe (Eds.), Conflict Resolution Theory and Practice. Integration and Application, Manchester, Manchester University Press, 1993.
36. Stevenson Christopher, Hans Off! The Struggle for Hans Island and the Potential Ra-mifications for International Border Dispute Resolution, “Boston College International & Comparative Law Review”, 2007, Vol. 30, No. 1, pp. 263-275.
37. Wallensteen Peter, Understanding Conflict Resolution. War, Peace and the Global Sys-tem, London, Sage Publications, 2002.
38. Wehr Paul, Conflict Regulation. Westview Special Studies in Peace, Conflict, and Con-flict Resolution, Boulder, Westview Press, 1979.
39. Young R. Oran, The Age of the Arctic, in “Foreign Policy”, 1986, No. 61, p. 160-179,