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Chapter Thirteen Maritime Terrorism and the International Law of Boarding of Vessels at Sea: Assessing the New Developments

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Chapter Summary

Developments in international law frequently follow catastrophic or highly-publicized incidents, usually with effect of changing or expanding the existing framework to deal with past incident. The primary fora for multilateral discussions of international legal developments concerning maritime terrorism has been International Maritime Organization (IMO). This chapter briefs about how these new maritime terrorism developments; the 2005 SU A Protocols, the PSI Interdiction Principles and the U.S. Ship Boarding Agreements interact with or affect international law regarding the boarding and inspection of foreign vessels at sea. It is through registration that ship nationality is attained and, despite significant international efforts to set criteria, States determine on their own whether to register a vessel and, allow a vessel to fly its flag. To this general legal principle of non-interference with foreign flagged vessels there are a number of exceptions, many of which are as longstanding as the principle of navigational freedom itself.

Keywords: international law; international legal developments; maritime terrorism; PSI Interdiction Principles; Vessels



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