Closer look at interpretation of maritime law

A workshop in Sri Lanka, Colombo from June 18th to 20th saw maritime law experts and practitioners from around the world meet to participate in two main sessions aimed at gathering State practice and interpretation information related to international legal instruments.

One session looked at Article 17 of the UN Convention against Illicit Traffic in Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances of 1988 (The Vienna Convention) and the treatment of Stateless Vessels. The outcomes of that session will feed into a report on State practice and lead a revision of the UNODC ‘Practical Guide for Competent National Authorities under Article 17’.

The second session saw a review of thematic chapters which will form part of the Second Edition of the UNODC ‘Maritime Crime: A Manual for Criminal Justice Practitioners’.

The chapters covered a full range of maritime crime issues such as:

  • human rights at sea
  • hostage taking at sea
  • terrorism at sea
  • trafficking of persons and smuggling of migrants at sea
  • maritime fuel theft.

Special annexes to the Manual will include privately contracted armed security personnel at sea and floating armouries. The event was organized by The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) as part of their Global Maritime Crime Programme.