Report calls anti-piracy operations legal

LONDON, April 22 (UPI) -- Claims that international maritime laws have been violated during counter-piracy operations off the Somali coast are incorrect, a new Chatham House report said.

The London-based non-governmental current-affairs analysis organization released a report Wednesday suggesting that a perception that international law leaves navies unable to combat piracy is ill-founded, Chatham House reported.


The report, "Pirates and How to Deal With Them," suggests there is sufficient authority granted by the United Nations and international laws for coast guard and naval vessels to use force to suppress piracy on the high seas.

The report warns that the growing international naval presence from at least 17 countries off the Somali coast must adhere to a degree of force that does "not exceed that reasonably required in the circumstances."

Report author Roger Middleton also argues that despite an increase in attention to the volatile piracy in the Gulf of Aden, the "issue is likely to continue to be a major problem for the foreseeable future, and only addressing the root causes, including the internal problems of Somalia, will offer a way to end piracy."

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