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Alex G. Oude Elferink

The Law of Maritime Boundary Delimitation

A Case Study of the Russian Federation

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Alex G. Oude Elferink

This volume presents an analysis of the maritime boundary delimitations of the Russian Federation. The focus of this analysis is the relationship between state practice and the rules of public international law applicable to the delimitation of maritime zones between neighboring states.
A first part establishes the contents of the law in this field. The main part of the work concerns an analysis of the position of the Russian Federation on the rules of maritime delimitation law and the practice of this state in relation to the delimitation of specific maritime boundaries with neighboring states.
The case study of the Russian Federation illustrates the significance of international law for the delimitation of maritime boundaries, while at the same time indicating the limits of the influence of the law on state behavior.

Series:

Edited by Alex G. Oude Elferink

The adoption of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea in 1982 has led to a period of relative stability in the law of the sea. However, especially in recent times there have also been calls to amend the Convention because of supposed shortcomings. Renegotiation of the Convention in all probability would be a time consuming process, the outcome of which is highly uncertain. Such a process would almost certainly negatively impact upon international cooperation in the management of ocean space as it is bound to lead to uncertainty and conflict over the applicable legal regime.
This work looks at topics, which can contribute to an understanding of how the Convention has been adapted to newly arising issues and how further adaptation may be achieved in the future, without a readjustment of the basic legal framework contained in the Convention. Issues reviewed are: the question to what extent the Convention provides a ‘constitution for the oceans’; the roles of the UN General Assembly and the Meeting of States Parties to the Convention in reviewing its implementation; the impact of state practice on the Convention and vice versa; and the significance of the formal amendment procedures and other mechanisms to adapt the Convention to changed circumstances.

Alex G. Oude Elferink

Alex G. Oude Elferink

Alex G. Oude Elferink

Alex G. Oude Elferink

Alex G. Oude Elferink

Abstract

The maritime zones of Russian Federation overlap with those of 12 neighbouring states. The practice of the Russian Federation concerning the delimitation of the boundaries of these zones provides an interesting opportunity to analyse the role of international law in the policy of a state in this respect, especially because bilateral negotiations of the Russian Federation have raised complex issues of law and fact. The analysis suggests that international law may influence the policy of a state regarding the delimitation of its maritime zones in different, albeit limited, ways. The role of international law in bilateral negotiations supports the conclusions the case law has reached on the significance of bilateral delimitation treaties for the formation of customary international law. This first part of the article provides an outline of the contents of maritime delimitation law, and analyses general aspects of the Russian Federation's practice concerning the boundaries of its maritime zones and the delimitations with Estonia, Finland, Georgia, Japan, Lithuania, North Korea, Poland, Romania, Sweden, Turkey and Ukraine.