ISSN: 2658-9346 | Arab Journal of International Law

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Tuesday 10 November 2020

Call for Papers to the attention of doctoral student interested in the subject of international law of the sea


IBN HAWQAL (943-988)

 977 - The Configuration of the Earth - Surat al-Ardh - صورة الارض 

The Editorial Committee of the Arab Journal of International Law (ARJIL) launches the present call for papers to the attention of doctoral student interested in the subject of international law of the sea. It is an opportunity for doctoral student to familiarize themselves with the methodology of research, and also broaden their professional and academic network.

The oceans and seas are not ruled by a legal vacuum. On the contrary, there is a specific branch of international law[i] dedicated to them, namely the international law of the sea[ii], whose goal is to provide some rules in the conflicting relationships between States and the other physical or juridical persons in the sea.[iii]

Its historic evolution was motivated by political, economic and security interests, and more recently scientific and environmental interests, which have paved to the way to conflicting claims on the exercise of exclusive rights (sovereign and jurisdictional) by States.

Of utmost importance in the international law of the sea is the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (1982), described as “the constitution of oceans”.[iv] It provided two fundamental principles. The first concerns the principle of the freedom of navigation in the high sea, advanced by the Dutch scholar Hugo Grotius whose book “mare liberum sive de jure quod batavis competit ad indicana commercial” published in 1609[v], claimed the right to navigate and trade for any ships throughout the world.[vi] The second principle is related to the sovereignty. The Convention was thus regarded as a “gift box” for coastal States which clearly appear as the winners of the United Nations third conference on the law of the sea. Indeed, until 200 miles away from its coast, a State is not bound to establish that it has some sovereign rights, provided that it has demarcated its zone under the conditions provided by the Convention with its neighbouring or adjacent States. Once these questions are resolved, a State possesses an exclusive economic zone until 200 miles which includes the continental shelf whatever its nature and the seabed. Moreover, the coastal State may request the extension of the continental shelf until 350 miles, provided it complies with the procedure provided by the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (Article 76, Annex II)[vii].

The application of the sovereignty principle may lead to a series of conflicting extension of the limits of national jurisdiction on the seabed. As far as the principle of freedom is concerned, it contributes to an abusive exploitation of natural resources qualified by the approach of “first come, first served”. Two scenarios, which according to M. Pardo, might cause undesirable consequences, namely economic injustice and risks of pollution. It is perfectly summarized as “the poor are getting poorer and poorer, the rich are getting richer and richer” [viii]. In order to create a “trilogy of needs”, between the needs of the industrialized countries, the needs of developing countries, and the needs of marine ecosystem, a fourth principle appeared, that is the world heritage of humanity enshrined in the part XI of the Convention.[ix]

In this context, the department “Seas and Oceans” submits to the interested doctoral student a non-exhaustive list of subjects which may guide to their submission. The department welcomes submissions which focus on the realities of the Arab World and the Mediterranean:

§  Delimitation and demarcation of maritime boundaries

§  Use of marine ecosystem (included the navigation)

§  Preservation of marine ecosystem

§  Marine scientific research

§  Geostrategic use of maritime zone (included MENA zone)

§  Legal Protection of maritime zone in the Arab countries

§  Coordination between scientific research and the development of Maghreb countries

Method of submission

§  The proposed submissions will be subjected to an evaluation by the editorial committee (a draft proposal of 500 words maximum)

§  The proposed submissions may be communicated in French, Arabic, and English

§  Only the proposal (unpublished) based on the scientific norms and documentation will be accepted .

§  The papers will be subjected to double blind peer review.

§  The proposals shall be in Word format, and accompanied by the author’s biography (PDF)

§  The proposals shall contain between 4000 and 4500 words (Times New Roman)



§  Books: Name of the author, the title (the place of publication: editor, date of publication).

§  Journals: Name of the author, the title of the article, the title of the journal (the place of publication: editor, date of publication).

§  Electronic resources: Only websites internationally known will be accepted (i.e. United Nations). Shall be indicated: the title of the website and the date of consultation. The URL is mandatory.



§  Introduction: It shall incorporate briefly the keywords, the methodology adopted and the main question of the article.

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§  Conclusion: It shall contain the main results. It shall not be a mere summary of the paper. No references in the conclusion.

Important Remarks

§  The ARJIL forbids any counterfeiting or illegal reproduction.

§  The publications of ARJIL do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its founders

§  The deadline for the submission of the final propositions and the brief paper is February, 28th 2021

§  The proposal shall be forwarded to the following email:


Mohamed Benchekroun

Director of the Department “Seas and Oceans”

Phone: +212 0666255383

Professor Elhoucine Chougrani

Director of the Arab Journal of International Law (ARJIL)





[i] André Monaco, Gouvernance des mers et des océans, Publisher by  ISTE (May 2, 2015)  p.22

[ii] Frederique Vallo,  La Mer et son droit, entre liberté et consensualisme, la difficile protection des espaces naturels fragiles, Publisher by Publibook (15 décembre 2009), p.12


[iii] Ibid

[iv] Donald Rothwell, The Oxford Handbook of the Law of the Sea, Publisher by OUP Oxford (2017), p.3

[v] Jill Barrett, Law of the Sea: UNCLOS as a Living Treaty.

[vi] GROTIUS (They marine), la liberté des mers /Mare Liberum, avec une introduction de Charles Leben, 2013, Coll. « Les introuvables ». In Annuaire française de droit international, volume 59, 2013, p.695

[vii] Hugo Grotius, Mare liberum, Create Space Independent Publishing by Platform (6 September 2012)

[viii] Intervention d'Élie Jarmache, Chargé de mission au secrétariat général de la mer, dirige la délégation française à la commission des limites du plateau continental à New York, membre de la commission juridique et technique de l’Autorité internationale des fonds marins, au colloque "Les enjeux maritimes du monde et de la France" du 20 mars 2017.


[ix] Tulio Scovazz,  “ The Concept of Common Heritage of Mankind  and the Genetic Resources of the Seabed beyond the Limits of National Jurisdiction”, Agenda Internacional Año XIV, N° 25, 2007, pp. 11-24

Keyuan Zou, Global Commons and the Law of the Sea, Publisher by Brill - Nijhoff (2018),  p.2


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