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Sri Lanka: The UN Convention: The law of the Sea September 11,2019   |  Source: Daily News

The Maritime Zones Law clearly states that the right exercised by Sri Lanka is a sovereign right which extends not only over the territorial sea but also over the airspace, as well as over the seabed and subsoil. This is in keeping with the text of the Geneva Convention on the Territorial Sea and Contiguous Zone, which have now been repeated in the 1982 Convention of the Law of the Sea. In Sri Lanka, the Maritime Zones Law specifically recognizes the right of innocent passage and states that ships of all States shall enjoy the rights of innocent passage through the territorial sea. In keeping with the 1958 Convention, it categorizes the passage as 'innocent only so long as such passage is not prejudicial to the peace, good order or security of the Republic'.

The proviso to the section states that no foreign warship shall enter or pass through the territorial sea except with the prior consent of and subject to such conditions as may be specified by the Minister. The Act also provides for innocent passage of aircraft through the air space above the territorial sea which must be in accordance with the written laws in force. The Military Aircraft must have the prior consent of the Minister as in the case of warships.

The territorial sea is under the sovereignty of Sri Lanka,

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