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Old 26-05-2008, 23:50   #31
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As I understand it is illegal for some"authority" to board you in international waters regardless of what ever hopped up charges they claim, or "treaties" they have. International waters are just that international, under no single authority. Which is why chasing pirates is such a tough job. Of course big talk from the armchair, however, I knew a sheriff from my home county who pretty much confirmed this, saying without serious probable cause it was an act of piracy. Now the "authority" can follow you into the territorial waters of where-ever, and bored you there with impunity. AND, the caveat, what happens if you suddenly need them to defend you while you are being chased by real bad guys, "Sorry you are outside of our juristiction," would be the last thing I wanted to hear on the radio.
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Old 27-05-2008, 03:41   #32
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My understanding is that in international waters that vessels have the right of free passage, and that a vessel can only be boarded with the permission of the Captain.

However, like much in life, he who has most guns makes the "laws" in practice.....so I would probably "volunteer" permission to come aboard.

No intention of ever visiting the US (too expensive and too much paperwork / hassle), but given that the Caribbean is in the US backyard it sounds like that I may run into the USCG / Navy operating within territorial waters of various island states where they will have authority to board without permission.....and I have no great problem with this, as long as on that day I do have nothing to hide

Of course being a UK flagged vessel I am only subject to the safety requirements of the UK wherever I am in the world, so my fire Extinguishers can be the wrong shape and even out of date .

I doubt I will come accross the RN, I think both rowing boats are in Afghanistan
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Old 27-05-2008, 08:06   #33
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Gord, the location is 26 x 77.45, the NW providence channel not the New. You can easily get more than 12 nm off shore there which is considered international water. I didn't get out my dividers before I allowed them on; they informed me after I asked and took their word for it.

It's all somewhat irrelevant because if they ask and you say yes I'm pretty sure BCG or anyone else isn't going to rush out and say you can't do that. The USCG and BCG are pretty tight, don't forget there is a communist country not very far away:-)

If you say no what's the point? They are mariners just like us, if you're on a gofast headed toward FTL at 50 knots it's a different story.
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Old 27-05-2008, 08:53   #34
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Gord, the location is 26 x 77.45, the NW providence channel not the New. You can easily get more than 12 nm off shore there which is considered international water...
You may have meant the NW Prov. Ch; but you said "We were boarded in the New Providence Channel"

26 x 77.45 puts you about 20nm off Rock Point, between Great Abaco Isl. & Great Stirrup Cay.

By your reckoning, Superior Shoal, located more than 30 nm from the nearest (Canadian) shoreline of Lake Superior, might be considered International Waters.
It’s NOT.

Neither would any part of the NW Providence Chanel be considered International Waters, no matter how far off the nearest land.
Being totally enclosed within the outer baselines, these features are within their respective territorial waters.

12 nm Territorial Limit & 200 nm Exclusive Economic Zones:
The territorial sea of The Bahamas comprises those areas of the sea having as their inner limits the baselines described in this section and as their outer limits a line established seaward from those baselines every point of which is at a distance of twelve miles from the nearest point of the appropriate baseline.
Subject to this section, the exclusive economic zone of The Bahamas comprises those areas of the sea, having as their inner limits the outer limits of the territorial sea of The Bahamas and, as their outer limits, a line drawn seaward from the baselines every point of which is at a distance of two hundred miles from the nearest point of the appropriate baseline.
Goto: http://www.un.org/Depts/los/LEGISLAT...HS_1993_37.pdf

I know I'm a nit-picker; but I just can't help trying to get the facts right.
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Old 27-05-2008, 09:44   #35
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It's ok if you're a nit picker, I am too and I hope the guy who re-rigs my boat is but I don't argue with the USCG:-) If they say I was in international water so be it. I guess the original point was that it wasn't an inconvenience for me to let them board. Many people have said I could have and should have refused them but I just can't see the point of that. I just want everybody to happy. Just looking at the title of the original post reminded me that they did ask me many times how many people were on board, I started thinking they were deaf but I think they were trying to test my answers? They only wanted to look in the bilges to make sure the boat they were now on wasn't sinking, I could have had 5 people hidden in places they didn't look.
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Old 27-05-2008, 13:21   #36
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My understanding is that in international waters that vessels have the right of free passage, and that a vessel can only be boarded with the permission of the Captain.
If I remember correctly, the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea permits the military of your own country to board your vessel in international waters. It also permits the military of another country to board your vessel with permission from your government.
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Old 28-05-2008, 04:52   #37
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I THINK Coot is spot on - this is how I have always understood to the maritime law.

However, if a gentleman requests permission to board, another gentleman does not the moral right to refuse however much he may dislike the "requesting" gentleman. All officers of the navies of internationaly recognised nations are deemed to be gentleman as are all masters of all vessels. IMHO.
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Old 28-05-2008, 07:05   #38
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I... this is how I have always understood to the maritime law...
For those who wish to improve their understanding of “UNCLOS”, the UNITED NATIONS CONVENTION ON THE LAW OF THE SEA

Home:
Oceans and Law of the Sea

The Convention:

UNCLOS and Agreement on Part XI - Preamble and frame index
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Old 28-05-2008, 08:24   #39
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Nice Links - Thanks Gord.
I am plowing my way through UNCLOS.
Thanks again
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