Definition of United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea
The United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), also called the Law of the Sea Convention or the Law of the Sea Treaty, is the international agreement that resulted from the third United Nations Conference on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS III), which took place from 1973 through 1982. The Law of the Sea Convention defines the rights and responsibilities of nations in their use of the world's oceans, establishing guidelines for businesses, the environment, and the management of marine natural resources. The Convention, concluded in 1982, replaced four 1958 treaties. UNCLOS came into force in 1994, a year after Guyana became the 60th state to sign the treaty. To date, 161 countries and the European Community have joined in the Convention. However, it is uncertain as to what extent the Convention codifies customary international law.
While the Secretary General of the United Nations receives instruments of ratification and accession and the UN provides support for meetings of states party to the Convention, the UN has no direct operational role in the implementation of the Convention. There is, however, a role played by organizations such as the International Maritime Organization, the International Whaling Commission, and the International Seabed Authority (the latter being established by the UN Convention).
- "The United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (A historical perspective)". United Nations Division for Ocean Affairs and the Law of the Sea. Retrieved April 30, 2009.
- "Chronological lists of ratifications of ratifications of, accessions and successions to the Convention and the related Agreements". United Nations Division for Ocean Affairs and the Law of the Sea. January 8, 2010. Retrieved 2010-02-24.
- "Table of claims to maritime jurisdiction". United Nations Division for Ocean Affairs and the Law of the Sea. Retrieved May 1, 2009.
- Wiktionary. Published under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.