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Jurisdiction in the Law of the Sea

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Chapter Summary

The legal rules and principles governing jurisdiction have a fundamental importance in international relations, because they are concerned with the allocation between States, and other entities such as the European Union, of competence to regulate daily life. Jurisdiction may be encountered in various shapes and forms, with different notions of it available at the international and the national level. The principle of territoriality is derived from the territorial element of the State and denotes the sum of its legal competences, its 'plenary' jurisdiction. Nationality confers upon person rights and obligations towards the State. The universality principle allows for the assertion of jurisdiction in circumstances where the crime was not perpetrated against a national of the State away from its territory without any impact upon it or the security of the State. The passive personality principle was already accepted in a series of international instruments, most notably in antiterrorist conventions.

Keywords: jurisdiction; nationality; passive personality principle; territoriality; universality



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