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1 Introduction

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Chapter Summary

This chapter introduces the international law of the sea and some of the international law sources, processes, and institutions important to its development. It provides an overview of the history of the law of the sea and of the major treaty in the field, the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (LOS Convention). The chapter examines the sources of law international lawyers consult, as well as introduces one forum in which the law of the sea has been interpreted and applied. The LOS Convention continues to serve as a foundational document for a wide range of oceans issues. There is an annual Meeting of States Parties to the LOS Convention, at which major oceans issues are discussed, but the Meeting of States Parties lacks any formal authority to change the Convention. The Restatement cautiously declares that the entire Convention has not merged into customary law.

Keywords: customary law; international law sources; international lawyers; Law of the Sea (LOS) Convention; Meeting of States Parties; Restatement



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