Pardo, Arvid
October 1968
Foreign Affairs;Oct68, Vol. 47 Issue 1, p123
This article ponders on which parties should control potential seabed resources as of October 1968. Without going into detail, it can be said that there is broad agreement on the general proposition that an undefined area of the seabed is beyond national jurisdiction and that international cooperation is desirable in the development of marine resources. But approaches to the question are widely divergent. The great oceanic maritime powers appear to favor a relatively restricted continental shelf under national jurisdiction and unrestricted access to and use of the ocean floor beyond. It is encouraging that all states have supported the notion that the ocean floor should be used for peaceful purposes, but there is a deep divergence between those which favor complete demilitarization and those which would be satisfied with more limited arms-control measures. Finally, although there is virtual unanimity with regard to the need to ensure freedom of scientific research and for international cooperation to control pollution of the seas, there do not appear to be clear ideas as to what specific action should be taken. In view of the divergence in outlook and approach among the countries represented on the Ad Hoc Committee, it is unlikely that the report which will be submitted to the General Assembly this fall will contain more than a limited number of general conclusions and recommendations.


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