Law Of The Sea Book uri icon


  • The Law of the Sea is a body of public international law governing the geographic jurisdictions of coastal states and the rights and duties among states in the use and conservation of the ocean environment and its natural resources. The Law of the Sea is commonly associated with an international treaty, the Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), negotiated under the auspices of the United Nations, was signed in 1982 by 117 States and entered into force in 1994. At present 133 States have signed and ratified UNCLOS; Canada, Israel, Turkey, USA, and Venezuela are the most prominent among those that have not ratified. This treaty both codified customary international law and established new law and institutions for the ocean. UNCLOS is best understood as a framework providing a basic foundation for the international law of the oceans intended to be extended and elaborated upon through more specific international agreements and the evolving customs of States. These extensions have begun to emerge already, making the law of the sea at once broader, more complex, and more detailed than UNCLOS per se.

publication date

  • 2001