U.S. ability to challenge excessive claims weakened by its non-party status to UNCLOS
The Convention also allows us to exercise high seas freedoms in foreign exclusive economic zones, including conducting military activities without coastal state interference. And this is important---the single most contentious issue in oceans law and policy today is the attempt by some foreign coastal States to treat the exclusive economic zone – or EEZ — like a territorial sea. The Convention makes clear that coastal States enjoy resource rights within the EEZ, but they do not enjoy and may not assert full sovereignty within the EEZ.
Because we are not a Party to the Law of the Sea Convention today, we must assert that our navigation and overflight rights and high seas freedoms are based upon customary international law. However, that approach plays directly into the hands of those foreign coastal States that want to move beyond the Convention. They too cite customary international law as the basis for their developing claims of coastal State sovereignty in the EEZ and in international straits.
We need to lock in the navigation and overflight rights and high seas freedoms contained in the Convention while we can. Then, acting from within the Convention, we can exercise effective leadership, and in conjunction with our freedom of navigation program, ensure that those rights and freedoms are not whittled away by foreign States.
Related argument(s) where this quote is used.
The U.S. is currently tracking dozens of excessive claims by states, some of which are from states seeking to take advantage of perceived U.S. weakness due to its non-party status to UNCLOS. Regardless, the U.S. would be in a better position to contest these claims (and dissuade further claims) as a party to UNCLOS.Related Quotes:
Parent Arguments:Supporting Arguments:
- China and Iran challenging U.S. operations because of its non-party status to UNCLOS
- U.S. lacks standing to challenge Iranian and Chinese excessive claims as a non-party to UNCLOS
- U.S. ability to challenge excessive claims weakened by its non-party status to UNCLOS
- UNCLOS would help protect U.S. naval freedoms against growing number of excessive claims
- ... and 4 more quote(s)