Prospects for Cooperation
NUS Centre for International Law series
Edited by Robert Beckman and J. Ashley Roach
More than half of the world’s annual merchant tonnage traverses Southeast Asia’s waters. With their economic and political interests closely linked to the sea, the ten Member States (Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam) of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) have long recognized the need to cooperate to protect commercial navigation and communications in these waters. While there have been various efforts to combat transnational maritime crimes such as piracy and armed robbery at sea in Southeast Asia, there has been no study on whether ASEAN member states can muster adequate and effective legal frameworks, consistent with the relevant international law, to arrest, prosecute and punish the perpetrators of maritime crimes. The issue is all the more critical in light of the seemingly intractable legal and judicial issues confronted by the international community in dealing with piracy off the coast of Somalia since 2007. This book brings together international experts in the fields of law of the sea, transnational crimes and ASEAN to examine whether and how ASEAN member states enhance legal cooperation to combat piracy and other maritime crimes. It argues that if ASEAN member states ratify and effectively implement certain global and regional instruments, they will be able to address incidents of piracy and maritime crimes in a comprehensive and wide-ranging manner. The global instruments examined include the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS); the 1988 Convention on the Suppression of Unlawful Acts Against the Safety of...