Naval warfare has never been limited to the military subjugation of the enemy. Its overall aim is sea denial and sea control. Methods necessary for sea control do not merely affect the parties to an international armed conflict but also states that are neutral or states not parties to the conflict. If the weakening of the enemy’s economy is also considered a legitimate goal, the law would be incomplete if it lacked rules relating to measures taken against neutral merchant shipping. Such rules are necessary since a state party to the conflict could otherwise shift...
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