Gudev Pavel
The US Policy in World Ocean
Publication Type:


ISSN 1811-2773

DOI 10.17994/IT.2016.14.1.44.9

The U.S. has traditionally claimed a key role in the protection of international legal norms, including the use and exploitation of the ocean’s space and resources. This sphere is especially significant for it, as control over maritime routes is essential for American national security and prosperity. Therefore, the current article focuses on the current state of the U.S. policy regarding regulation in the World Ocean. The U.S. struggles against other states excessive maritime claims in the framework of the Freedom of Navigation Programme (FON). Its implementation is crucial not only to ensure US commercial and economic interests, but strategic and military also. First, it guarantees the possibility of American armed forces’ rapid transfer by sea. However, in some respects international maritime legislation restricts the United States ability to protect its interests. The U.S. fights against threats which pose a challenge to all countries of the world community like nuclear proliferation, piracy, maritime terrorism, all the while itself directly violating the norms and provisions of the 1982 UN Convention on Law of the Sea (UNCLOS). Moreover, the US desire to ensure itself a priority level of naval and intelligence activities leads Washington to broad interpretation of conventional norms. It also attempts to interpret some of the norms as part of the common legal order, which is applicable beyond Conventional terms. As a result, the US ocean policy can be qualified as contradictory and inconsistent because of its non-participation in the 1982 UNCLOS and because of it continuously encourages other states to respect the Convention's norms. The article, however, identifies some developments, which could force the United States to revisit its position and maybe join the 1982 UNCLOS. 

Keywords: Common spaces | 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) | Freedom of Navigation | right of transit passage | international straits | Navy | Proliferation Security Initiative (PSI) | maritime terrorism | conventional and customary law | Arctic | Asia-Pacific region |



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