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An Overview of Piracy in the First Decade of the 21St Century

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Chapter Summary

Piracy is probably the most ancient crime committed at sea. This chapter illuminates two problems which may be considered critical?one theoretical and one practical. The first one is related to the absence in international law of a piracy definition suitable for its modern illegal practice. The next one is what could be done by sea powers and coastal States to protect sailors' lives and property at sea from this kind of crime. Maybe it is time to consider piracy as dangerous as terrorism? Maybe it is time to use joint naval forces? Maybe it is time to make international law a little bit more suitable for saving peoples' lives and property at sea? Acknowledging pirates as &t;enemies of the human race&t; (Hostis humani generis), the vast majority of states try to oppose piracy by adopting regulatory provisions and creating administrative structures.

Keywords: coastal states; Hostis humani generis; illegal practice; international law; piracy; protect sailors' lives



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