- The Convention for the Suppression of Unlawful Acts Against the Safety of Navigation, 1988 (“SUA Convention”) barely remedied the shortcomings of the anti-piracy provisions of UNCLOS. Discuss whether you agree with this.
- Your country and a neighbouring country are about to declare hostilities due to a dispute about exploiting resources within waters where the countries have overlapping maritime boundaries. As an international maritime policy expert, advise your government of the alternative means available to resolve the dispute as provided by the international law of the
With reference to specific provisions of United Nations Convention on the Law of the Seas 1982 (UNCLOS), discuss how UNCLOS attempts to balance the conflicting principles of mare clausum and mare liberum. Do you think UNCLOS was successful in achieving that balance? Justify your answer.
Flag state jurisdiction and port state control give bite to the bark of IMO international regulations.
Discuss the above statement with relevant regulations and examples.
M/V Frodo is a bulk carrier flying the flag of Rohan State. Due to the Covid-
19 pandemic, Friedman Resources, owners of M/V Frodo, was going through financial difficulties and currently operates a cost-cutting policy. M/V Frodo, laden with iron ore, commenced a voyage to the Gondor Republic on the 18th of June 2021, manned by a master and ten crew. M/V Frodo was running low on propulsion fuel, a high-grade heavy fuel oil with 1.5% sulphur content. The master, therefore, made refuelling arrangements with a fuel contractor within 87 nautical miles from Gondor Republic coasts.
Two days into the voyage, the cook informed the master that the store of meats and vegetables was running low. He also informed the master that the crew were not happy as they had not received their wages in two months, and the fifteen-year-old experienced deckhand who was injured by a faulty hatch door needed medical attention. There were no medical supplies on board; the first aid kit had been exhausted. The master informed the cook that everything would be sorted once they got to Gondor ports.
On the 23rd of June 2021, when M/V Frodo was within 87 nautical miles of Gondor Republic, the master slowed speed to 2 knots to await the fuel contractor for refuelling. The meats on board were completely exhausted, so the master authorised the cook and other crew to utilise the fishing net in the galley to fish in the waters. The cook and three other crew commenced fishing, and within twenty minutes, they caught 25kg worth of fish. While the crew were celebrating their catch, a Gondor Maritime Authority (GMA) patrol vessel approached, directed the master to prepare for boarding due to M/V Frodo’s breach of Gondor laws. The master picked up speed and headed westward towards Prati State, a state adjacent to Gondor.
The GMA patrol vessel also picked up speed in pursuit of M/V Frodo. Thirty minutes later, the GMA patrol vessel engine broke down and could not continue the pursuit. The GMA patrol vessel captain radioed another GMA patrol vessel which came from the western part of Gondor, to continue the pursuit. The second GMA patrol vessel caught up with M/V Frodo (who had run out of fuel) within 11nm of Prati State coast. M/V Frodo was arrested for breaching Gondor’s fishing laws. The master of M/V Frodo, in defence, said they did not breach Gondor’s laws because the international law of the sea allowed all vessels to fish in areas beyond national jurisdiction.
Rohan State and Gondor Republic are signatories of UNCLOS and all other international maritime conventions. With reference to relevant UNCLOS provisions and other international regulations, answer the following questions:
- Was the master of M/V Frodo right in his defence?
- Explain in detail at least four (4) international shipping regulations that M/V Frodo has likely breached.
- Was the pursuit carried out by the GMA Patrol vessels appropriately executed?
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