Sentinel del Norte.  (Photo: Google Maps)

We have all used the app Google Maps sometime in our lives to know the address or some street. The platform Google In charge of offering all the information that users need from almost anywhere in the world, it has become one of the the most used in the day to day; either as a vehicle navigation system, to find directions or simply to ‘travel’ through different corners of the planet.

Sometimes the platform even lets us enter places where no one has ever been. This is the case of a user of Twitter, Don Wonka, who accidentally ran into a small island about 60 square km in area and 8 km wide, which he later discovered it was about North Sentinel, belonging to the Andaman Islands archipelago, in the Bay of Bengal in the Indian Ocean.

The user was struck by the wreckage of a ship near the island, which later discovered that it was the cargo ship MV Primrose, a boat whose occupants spotted in August 1981 a group of indigenous people armed with bows and arrows that came out of the dense vegetation and tried to board the ship. But where did they come from on a seemingly desert island?

Investigating on the mysterious island, he found that he had stumbled upon one of the most inhospitable places on the planet, which is also the territory of an indigenous tribe, the sentineles of the north, who live “out of contact” with the outside world and who punish anyone who tries to enter their territory quite harshly. To this day it is unknown what language they speak, or how many there are.

Sentinel del Norte. (Photo: Google Maps)

Sentinel del Norte is a territory of India, but the State has not had a presence in that place since, in 2006, the authorities turned the small island into “Exclusion zone”, after the death of two fishermen who got too close to its beaches. They were not the only ones attacked. American missionary John Allen Chay was killed by the tribe while trying to contact the inhabitants.

Experts estimate that there are only between 50 and 150 of the tribe left on the island, whose visit is illegal, due to the risk that the tribe will be contaminated with diseases from abroad. No immunity, any virus like SARS-CoV-2 could wipe out the entire tribe. Attempts have been made to contact them on several occasions, and only a few times have they been recorded in images.


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