Even after South China Sea ruling, U.S. still best served by ratification of UNCLOS to preserve rights to continental shelf
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Following the award in the matter of the South China Sea, is the U.S. better ratifying UNCLOS? Yes. While the U.S. has maintained that most UNCLOS is customary international law and as such has followed it, the U.S. is failing to take advantage of the provisions relating to the continental shelf. Also, they are losing out on an important dispute resolution tool. While the U.S. enjoys strong relationships with most arctic states, Russia is a notable exception. Russia has been increasingly aggressive worldwide, but they have no history of violating the law of the sea. By not acceding to UNCLOS, the U.S. has removed itself from the body of international law Russia seems to respect.