UN court hears Peru-Chile sea border dispute

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Peru's ambassador Allen Wagner, left, shakes hands with Chile's ambassador Albert van Klaveren Stork, right, prior to the start of hearings in a dispute between Peru and Chile over the two countries' maritime boundary at the International Court of Justice in The Hague, Monday Dec. 3, 2012. (AP Photo/Peter Dejong)

THE HAGUE, Netherlands (AP) — The Peruvian government is asking the United Nations' highest court to set a maritime border between Peru and Chile, in a case that will carve up control over the rich seas off the two Andean neighbors' Pacific coasts.

Peru launched the case in 2008, arguing that there has never been a maritime boundary set and that two agreements Chile claims set the border are non-binding and merely established some fishing zones.

Chile insists the border between the two countries was clearly set in treaties signed in 1952 and 1954.

Peru lawyer Alain Pellet told the court Monday there is "a flagrant lack of any maritime delimitation" between the two countries and that Chile's proposed border "radically cuts off Peru's access to the high seas."