UNCLOS provisions on innocent passage offer a potential model for resolving military use of space
The militarization of outer space should depend on the categorical regions of space. In territorial space, states should be allowed to use whatever force is reasonably necessary to ensure their interests. Much like the Coast Guard in the United States, armed patrol vessels may be necessary to protect the state from threats of harm ranging from customs violations to people smuggling. However, presence in territorial waters should not be sufficient to detain those engaged in innocent passage to a space port in orbit or on the celestial body. Vessels will require supplies, repairs, food, fuel and other materials for voyages, necessities which should not be restricted. By allowing open uses of territorial space for innocent passage, vessels will be able to effectively obtain supplies and make repairs. This freedom will also provide pecuniary compensation to those states. In transitory space, vessels should not face constant intrusions of being boarded and searched. Like the high seas, transitory space should allow for the quickest passage of vessels and the most freedoms. By disallowing unprovoked arrests of vessels, more powerful states will not be allowed a virtual monopoly based on their military forces. Likewise, military and government vessels are prohibited from being arrested. These restrictions support the sovereignty of each state over its persons.
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The solutions the international community worked out to resolve some of the most contentious issues over ocean governance -- specifically, how to equitably divide up a common shared resource, how to sustainably manage the global commons for the benefit of all, and how to ensure all states have the freedom to navigate a global common -- have potential to serve as the basis for a similar agreement for outer space.Related Quotes:
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