Monday, March 20, 2017

2016 Year in Review: Country & Border Changes

Inside this Review of 2016:

Map of election results from the UK's "Brexit" referendum on leaving the European Union
    • Country name, capital, and flag changes
    • Border changes and disputed territories 
    • Separatist states and proposed new countries
    • Recognition of disputed countries 
    • Countries joining (and leaving) international organizations
    • Sea borders and seabed claims
    • New states and provinces within countries
    • Changes to countries' coastal contours and official languages
        And in companion articles:
        Rebel Control Around the World in 2016 
        Time Zones that Changed in 2016 

        It's PolGeoNow's mission to track changes to the world's countries, borders, and territories, whether it's happening formally on the books or unofficially on the ground. When new countries appear, borders change, and territorial disputes arise or are settled, you'll hear about it here. With 2016 now concluded, here's our look back at the events of the year!

        (For extra coverage of geography events in 2017, follow @PolGeoNow on Twitter!)

        2016 Year in Review: Rebel Control Around the World

        The rebel control maps in this article were produced for PolGeoNow's professional conflict map subscription service. Full-size versions of all PolGeoNow conflict maps, along with territorial control timelines, are accessible to subscribers. You can learn more about our map subscriptions here. Non-subscribers can also view our collection of free sample control map reports.

        Map of fighting and territorial control in Syria's Civil War (Free Syrian Army rebels, Kurdish YPG, Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), Al-Nusra Front, Islamic State (ISIS/ISIL), and others), updated for February 2016. Now includes terrain and major roads (highways). Highlights recent locations of conflict and territorial control changes, such as Menagh airbase, northern Aleppo, Salma, Rabia, Nubl, Baghaliya, Tishrin Dam, and more.
        Syria in February 2016

        Map of fighting and territorial control in Syria's Civil War (Free Syrian Army rebels, Kurdish YPG, Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), Jabhat Fateh al-Sham (Al-Nusra Front), Islamic State (ISIS/ISIL), and others), updated to December 18, 2016. Now includes terrain and major roads (highways). Includes recent locations of conflict and territorial control changes, such as Aleppo, Palmyra, Khan al-Shih, Mayda'ani, and more. Colorblind accessible.
        Syria in December 2016

        The Year in Territorial Control Changes

        For the past three years, PolGeoNow has published a "Year in Review" article to summarize all the political geography news that's happened in the past 12 months. The 2014 and 2015 articles included news about changing territorial control in conflict zones, but because this is a major topic of its own, we've chosen to split these events into a separate article for 2016. So read on for a concise summary of last year's rebel control changes...

        See Also: 2016 Year in Review: Country & Border Changes 
         

        Syria, Iraq, and the "Islamic State"

        The Syrian Civil War continued to be the biggest armed conflict in the world through 2016, as well as a prominent example of a country whose territory isn't all controlled by the recognized government. During the past year, pro-government forces scored some major victories against the rebels, recapturing the country's second largest city and gradually increasing control in areas around the capital.

        Interactive Maps: Which Places Switched Time Zones in 2016?

        This article is a spin-off from our popular yearly review of political geography events. For more on changes to countries and borders in 2016, check out our main 2016 year in review article

        A time zone map of the world, showing all the world's standard time zones as of the beginning of 2017, with UTC offsets.
        Free map of world time zones from Wikimedia Commons, up-to-date for the beginning of 2017. See the close-ups below for interactive, before-and-after illustrations of time zone changes during 2016.

        Article and additional graphics work by Evan Centanni
         

        Who Controls Time Zones?

        The system of dividing the world into time zones is accepted all around the world, in principle. It's an organized way of letting clocks in each part of the world hit noon around the middle of daylight hours, even if it's midnight on the other side of the world. But surprisingly, there's actually no international organization that determines time zones. Except for in the open ocean, where time zones are standardized by a loose agreement between fleets and ship operators, the dividing lines are set independently by each country's government, or even by local governments below the national level.

        Saturday, March 18, 2017

        Iraq Control Map & Timeline - March 2017 (Subscription)

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        (To see other maps in this series, view all Iraq updates.)

        Research by Djordje Djukic. Map by onestopmap.com, Evan Centanni, and Djordje Djukic

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        Detailed map of territorial control in Iraq as of March 17, 2016, including territory held by the so-called Islamic State (ISIS, ISIL), the Baghdad government, and the Kurdistan Peshmerga. Shows developments in the ongoing coalition battle to recapture the city of Mosul. Includes key locations from recent events, such as Mosul, Badush, and Tal Abta. Colorblind accessible. Since January, fighting has raged on for control of Mosul, Iraq's second-largest city. Iraqi government forces and allies have secured control of the city's eastern half from the so-called "Islamic State" (IS; formerly ISIS/ISIL), and have continued to gain ground both in the city and in the surrounding region.
         
        See all this and more on the latest update to PolGeoNow's concise, professional map of control in Iraq's civil war, including a timeline of changes since our previous Iraq map report of November 2016.

        This map and report are premium professional content, available to paid subscribers of the PolGeoNow Conflict Mapping Service.

        Want to see before you subscribe? Check out our most recent FREE SAMPLE Iraq map report!

        Exclusive report includes:
        • Up-to-date map of current territorial control in Iraq, color-coded for the Iraqi government, "Islamic State" (ISIS/ISIL) extremists, and Kurdistan's Peshmerga forces. Colorblind accessible.
        • Detailed indication of town-by-town control, including all major cities and many smaller ones, as well as major roads and provincial boundaries
        • Markers for key areas of recent fighting such as Mosul, Badush, and Tal Abta
        • Timeline of changes to the situation since early January, compiled by our Iraq-Syria specialist, with links to sources
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        Can I purchase just this map?
        This map and report are not available for automated purchase to non-subscribers. If you need access or republication rights for only this map report, contact service@polgeonow.com for options.

        Friday, February 24, 2017

        Syria Control Map & Timeline: Rebels Capture Al-Bab - February 2017 (Subscription)

        SUBSCRIBERS CLICK HERE TO PROCEED TO ARTICLE AND MAP

        (To see other maps in this series, view all Syria updates.)

        Research by Djordje Djukic. Map by onestopmap.com, Evan Centanni, and Djordje Djukic

        Subscribe for full access to all conflict map reports!

        Map of fighting and territorial control in Syria's Civil War (Free Syrian Army rebels, Kurdish YPG, Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), Jabhat Fateh al-Sham / Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (Al-Nusra Front), Islamic State (ISIS/ISIL), and others), updated to February 24, 2017. Now includes terrain and major roads (highways). Includes recent locations of conflict and territorial control changes, such as Al-Bab, Qabasin, Tasil, Abu Khashab, and more. Colorblind accessible In the past month, the so-called "Islamic State" (IS; formerly ISIS/ISIL) has lost control of Al-Bab, the third-largest city in Aleppo province, to Turkish-backed rebels, even as the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) approach the group's capital city of Raqqah in the east. And in southwestern Syria, rebels have lost ground to both government and IS forces.
         
        See all this and more on the latest update to PolGeoNow's concise, professional Syrian Civil War control map, which includes a timeline of changes since our previous Syria map report in December, with sources cited.

        This map and report are premium professional content, available to paid subscribers of the PolGeoNow Conflict Mapping Service.

        Want to see before you subscribe? Check out our most recent FREE SAMPLE Syria map!

        Exclusive report includes:
        • Up-to-date map of current territorial control in Syria, color-coded for the Assad government, rebel groups, "Islamic State" (ISIS/ISIL) fighters, and Kurdish/SDF forces. Colorblind accessible.
        • Special symbols indicating towns dominated by rebels of the former Nusra Front (now Hayat Tahrir al-Sham) and Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF).
        • Detailed indication of city-by-city control, including key towns and other locations important to current events.
        • Locations of recent fighting and other important events, including Al-Bab, Qabasin, Tasil, Abu Khashab, and more.
        • Detailed timeline of important events and changes to territorial control since January 20, 2017, compiled by our Syria-Iraq expert, with links to sources.

        SUBSCRIBERS CLICK HERE TO PROCEED TO ARTICLE AND MAP

        Not signed up yet? Click here to learn more about our professional subscription service!

        Can I purchase just this map?
        This map and report are not available for automated purchase to non-subscribers. If you need access or republication rights for only this map report, contact service@polgeonow.com for options.