Professor Milena Sterio traveled to the Seychelles this week to participate in meetings with the Seychelles’ Attorney General and members of the judiciary about the ongoing Somali pirate prosecutions in the Seychelles’ courts. Sterio served on a delegation representing the Public International Law & Policy Group, which recently began work in the area of Somali piracy, through the creation of its Piracy Working Group. The mission to the Seychelles had two specific goals. The first goal was to present the Seychelles Attorney General with copies of eighteen legal memoranda, addressing various legal issues related to Somali piracy. Topics covered in the memoranda include the applicability of 1982 U.N. Convention on the Law of the Sea and customary law to piracy incidents off the coast of Somalia, to more specialized discussions on, for example, relevant international regimes related to the freezing both of piracy financiers’ assets and of financial gains derived from piracy. The group hopes this legal research will assist the Seychelles in the prosecution of Somali pirates in the Seychelles courts. Second, the delegation entered into an oral agreement through which the Seychelles Attorney General’s office will continue to request and obtain legal research from PILPG on piracy topics as issues arise in their future prosecutions of pirates.
To read a description of the Piracy Working Group and its work with the government of the Seychelles, click here: http://intlawgrrls.blogspot.com/2011/12/in-seychelles-in-pursuit-of-pirates.html