1st Edition

Maritime Operations Law in Practice Key Cases and Incidents

Edited By David Letts, Rob Mclaughlin Copyright 2023
    250 Pages
    by Routledge

    250 Pages
    by Routledge

    The law that applies to maritime operations at sea is complex and comprises two distinct elements: treaty law (1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea), and the cases and incidents that occur at sea in both peacetime and during armed conflict which result in the creation of customary international law applicable to maritime operations at sea. Covering sovereignty and vessel status, jurisdiction and interdiction, freedom of navigation, maritime law enforcement and security, and the law of naval warfare, this edited collection brings together the most famous and influential cases and incidents at sea. Exploring the entire spectrum of maritime operations from ‘high end’ war-fighting to constabulary operations that are conducted by naval forces and maritime law enforcement agencies at sea to provide the factual circumstances of each case or incident; offering sophisticated analysis and insights into the case or incidents enduring importance, and their significance for the development of the law applicable to maritime operations; and offering a detailed account and evaluation of the most critical but rarely understood cases in maritime operations law, which encourages comparison between key cases, this book will be an essential reference for practitioners, scholars, teachers, and students of maritime operations law.




    List of Treaties, Cases and National Legislation cited

    1. Introduction (David Letts and Rob McLaughlin)

    Part I: Sovereignty and Vessel Status

    2. The ‘Lotus Case’ (France V Turkey) (Camille Goodman)

    3. ARA Libertad (Martin Fink)

    Part II: Jurisdiction and Interdiction

    4. The MS Achille Lauro Hijacking (Steven Haines)

    5. The So San Incident (Douglas Guilfoyle)

    6. United States of America v Lei Shi (David Letts)

    7. The Ali and Shibin Cases in Relation to Article 101(C) of UNCLOS and the Facilitation of Piracy (Tamsin Phillipa Paige and Rob McLaughlin)

    Part III: Freedom of Navigation, Maritime Law Enforcement, and Maritime Security

    8. The Black Sea Bumping Incident (Pete Pedrozo)

    9. I’m Alone (Stuart Kaye)

    10. The Red Crusader Incident (Rob McLaughlin)

    11. MV Saiga (No.2) (Phil Drew)

    12. The ‘Whiskey on the Rocks’ Incident (Cameron Moore)

    Part IV: Law of Naval Warfare

    13. RMS Lusitania (Cameron Moore)

    14. The Admiral Graf Spee in Montevideo (James Farrant)

    15. The Altmark Incident (James Farrant)

    16. The Sinking of ARA General Belgrano (David Letts)

    17. The Mavi Marmara Incident (Douglas Guilfoyle)


    David Letts is the Director of the Centre for Military and Security Law, Australian National University College of Law, and an Associate Professor at the Australian National Centre for Ocean Resources and Security, University of Wollongong. He continues to serve in a part-time role in the Royal Australian Navy and has undertaken a wide range of operational, legal, and policy roles over more than four decades of navy service. David’s academic research interests centre upon the application of legal regimes to military operations, and he has published academic articles and book chapters on topics including military justice, law of the sea, maritime security, the law of naval warfare, international humanitarian law, and the legal issues that arise on peacekeeping operations. He is the co-editor of Law of the Sea in South East Asia (Routledge 2020).

    Rob McLaughlin is Professor of Law at the Australian National Centre for Ocean Resources and Security at the University of Wollongong, Senior Fellow at the Stockton Center for International Law at the U.S. Naval War College, and Honorary Professor at the Australian National University College of Law. He served for several decades in the Royal Australian Navy as a seaman and legal officer, and more recently worked in the UNODC Global Maritime Crime Programme. His research interests include the law of naval warfare, maritime security and law enforcement, the law of armed conflict, and military and security law. His most recent book is Recognition of Belligerency and the Law of Armed Conflict (Oxford 2020).