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The Australian National University

Maritime Law Enforcement and the Aggravation of the South China Sea Dispute: Implications for Australia

David Letts, Rob McLaughlin and Hitoshi Nasu Vol 34 (2016)
South China Sea Agora

This contribution to the Agora assesses a number of the key legal issues arising from the South China Sea (Award) from the perspective of maritime law enforcement activities. Initially, the paper summarises relevant aspects of the Award, before focussing on two distinct issues raised by the Philippines in the arbitration: a series of navigational incidents in the vicinity of Scarborough Shoal in 2012 and the routine presence of Chinese maritime enforcement vessels in the vicinity of Second Thomas Shoal. The paper analyses the ruling by the Arbitral Tribunal in relation to each of these issues and then postulates implications that may arise for Australia. Concluding remarks suggest that States which have an interest in the region should not sit idle as to do so would likely see existing legal rights diminish.

Vol 34 (2016)

Table of contents

Updated:  19 October 2016/Responsible Officer:  Australian Year Book of International Law Director/Page Contact:  AYBIL Web Publisher