News Local UNGA adopts resolutions on the oceans and seas

UNGA adopts resolutions on the oceans and seas

The UN General Assembly has adopted two resolutions on the oceans and seas linked to implementation of the landmark 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, with Turkey being the only UN member state voting against.

With the resolution “Oceans and the law of the sea” (document A/74/L.22) — adopted by a recorded vote of 135 in favour to one against (Turkey), with three abstentions (Colombia, El Salvador, Venezuela) — the UNGA called on states that have not done so to become parties to the Agreement for the Implementation of the Provisions of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea.  It further called on them to harmonise national legislation with the Convention, and for capacity-building initiatives to consider the needs of developing countries.  It also urged all States to combat piracy and armed robbery at sea and ensure freedom and safety of navigation.

The General Assembly also adopted a consensus resolution, titled “Sustainable fisheries, including through the 1995 Agreement for the Implementation of the Provisions of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea of 10 December 1982 relating to the Conservation and Management of Straddling Fish Stocks and Highly Migratory Fish Stocks, and related instruments” .

Cyprus’ Permanent Representative to the UN Andreas Mavroyiannis said in a statement that “we regret that a vote was requested once again, in a futile attempt to question the UNCLOS as the Constitution of the Oceans and the indisputable legal framework for all activities in the oceans and seas.”

“My delegation would like to stress once more that the Convention represents a carefully crafted balance among the rights and interests of all states in spite of their specific characteristics. No state can continue requesting special treatment or denying rights of other states, such as island states or states comprising islands. Article 121 of UNCLOS has definitely put an end to such claims,” he noted.

Furthermore, he said that “no country can pursue outlandish maritime claims guided by might, and not by well-established rules of international law, and no state should enter into dubious bilateral arrangements that contravene the Convention; not as a matter of principle and not as a method of creating faits accomplis that reflect their own distorted perception of international law, based on relative power and not on customary rules of international law, which international jurisprudence has repeatedly deemed the Convention to reflect.”

“Such arrangements have no legal effects, nor do they affect the status of the UNCLOS as the sole pertinent universal legal framework on the delimitation of maritime zones codifying international law. Upholding the integrity of the Convention is the collective responsibility of all of us,” he noted.

Th Representative of Greece also expressed regret that a vote was requested again in an attempt to challenge the Convention’s preeminent role and universal character.  “By establishing the legal framework within which all ocean and sea activities must be carried out, the Convention promotes legal stability and helps to maintain global peace and security,” he noted.

He went on to say that “international jurisprudence has long accepted that its provisions either embody or reflect customary international law.  The 2019 omnibus resolution has particular significance, marking the twenty-fifth anniversary of the Convention’s entry into force.  It is imperative that the international law of the sea, the principles of good neighbourly relations and both the sovereignty — and sovereign rights — of all States over maritime zones, including those generated by islands, are respected.  All members of the international community must abide by these principles and should refrain from any actions that undermine regional stability and security,” he added.

(Cyprus News Agency)

Top Stories

Labour Ministry: Special leave requests for parents

The Labour Minister's decision on the special allowance for parents looking after their children because schools have closed has been published in the special...

UK universities minister tells students ‘stay where you are’

Michelle Donelan, the UK's minister of state for universities, has told students at English Universities who are still in halls of residence or private...

U.S. coronavirus cases surge past 115,000; Trump mulls New York quarantine

The number of known coronavirus U.S. cases soared well past 115,000, with more than 1,900 dead, as President Donald Trump said on Saturday he...

UK will have done well if fewer than 20,000 die, NHS medical director says

The United Kingdom will have done well if it comes through the coronavirus crisis with fewer than 20,000 deaths, Stephen Powis, the national medical...

Lombardy coronavirus deaths near 6,000 as Italy mulls extending lockdown

Italy's Lombardy region, which has borne the worst of the coronavirus contagion, recorded 542 new deaths on Saturday as the national government was said...


Village salad

A must-have with every meal is a village salad. You will find it in every tavern or greek restaurant you visit in Cyprus. Make...

Courgettes with eggs

Heat the oil in a frying pan and fry the courgettes at a medium heat until they soften. Add salt and add the eggs....

Classic Pastitsio

Prepare the mince sauce: heat the butter in a pan and sauté the mince with the onion and garlic until nicely browned, mixing well....

Grilled vegetable and goat cheese rolls

Brush the vegetables with olive oil and season. Heat a pan/griddle and cook them carefully until golden on both sides, making sure their shape...