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Max Planck Encyclopedia of Public International Law [MPEPIL]

Law of the Sea, History of

Andree Kirchner

From: Oxford Public International Law (http://opil.ouplaw.com). (c) Oxford University Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved.date: 29 June 2022

Ancient Times to 1648 — UNCLOS (UN Convention on the Law of the Sea)

Published under the auspices of the Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law under the direction of Professor Anne Peters (2021–) and Professor Rüdiger Wolfrum (2004–2020). 

1 In order to understand the law of the sea, it is of fundamental importance to understand the roots and motives of the law of the sea.2 Only a comprehensive understanding of the history of the law of the sea enables an understanding of the nature of the conflicts and the sensitive balances of today’s law of the sea, in the form of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (1982) (see also Conferences on the Law of the Sea). Such an understanding is of even more importance in the evaluation of current problems and dilemmas.3 The history of the law of the...
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