The dispute settlement system under the UN Law of the Sea Convention: selected issues


Professor Sienho Yee

Wuhan University China Institute of Boundary and Ocean Studies and Institute of International Law;

Membre, Institut de droit international; and Editor-in-Chief, Chinese Journal of International Law (

Website:; Email:



The reading materials for this special course are as follows (a deliberate decision has been made not to reproduce the whole materials so you can try to look for them yourselves and show how resourceful you are):


1.      ICJ, history: ; how it works:

Statute, etc.:  (look for Basic Documents in the left hand column and hit the applicable link for the documents)


2.      UNCLOS: read very carefully all these provisions: Part XV (279-299); Part XI, section 5 (arts. 186-191); articles 15, 74, 83; 76; Part XVI (arts. 300-304); art. 311; Annexes II, V, VI, VII, and VIII. (This course presumes a basic knowledge in the entire law of the sea. So you should have read the entire UNCLOS and bring it with you to the lectures for easy reference.)


a.      The whole UNCLOS can be found here (you should download it to your computer for easy reference): ; 1994 Agreement: ;

b.      Read as you please: UNCLOS Drafting materials: ;

c.       Read as you please: More useful site for official materials: .


3.      Sienho Yee, En Route to the Final Shape of the UNCLOS Dispute Settlement System: Some Pivotal Negotiating Procedural Steps Worthy of Consideration by Future Treaty-makers and Leaders in Treaty-making, 13 Chinese Journal of International Law (2014), 185-202.


4.      Sienho Yee, The Presidency of the ITLOS and the “National State Extension” Concern, 10 Chinese Journal of International Law (2011), 739-770.


5.      Sienho Yee, The South China Sea Arbitration (The Philippines v. China): Potential Jurisdictional Obstacles or Objections, 13 Chinese Journal of International Law (2014), 663-739 (Free access link:


6.      Sienho Yee, The South China Sea Arbitration: The Clinical Isolation and/or One-Sided Tendencies in the Philippines’ Oral Arguments, 14 Chinese JIL (2015), 423-435 (free access link:


7.      Sienho Yee, Conciliation and the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea, 44 Ocean Development and International Law (2013), 315-334.


8.      Sienho Yee, Sketching the Debate on Military Activities in the EEZ:  An Editorial Comment, 9 Chinese Journal of International Law (2010), 1-7.


9.      ICJ Judgment: Delimitation in the Black Sea (Romania v. Ukraine), ICJ 2009, free access:


10.   ITLOS Judgment in Case No. 16: Maritime Boundary between Bangladesh and Myanmar:  Free access:


11.   Shi Jiuyong, Maritime Delimitation in the Jurisprudence of the International Court of Justice, 9 Chinese JIL (2010), 271. Free access,


12.   The South China Sea Issue (materials from the website of the Foreign Ministry of China)( )

Position papers:


13.   Chinese Society of International Law, The Tribunals Award in the South China Sea Arbitration Initiated by the Philippines Is Null and Void,


14.   Read SOME cases listed in these pages as much as possible (you are not required to read them all!):


a.      ITLOS, introduction: 

b.      ITLOS, cases:

c.      Arbitration:

d.      The Southern Bluefin Tuna Case:





Further materials may be added at this webpage, please check back from time to time (ideally once a week; and definitely two weeks before the Lectures):