Top Scoops

Book Reviews | Gordon Campbell | Scoop News | Wellington Scoop | Community Scoop | Search


Piracy in International Waters...Taking a Stand!

In a 24 July Press release, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters has condemned the seizure of 2 oil tankers in the Strait of Hormuz, describing the seizure as “ an inexcusable violation of international law, including the freedom of navigation.” Furthermore, Mr Peters has called on Iran, whose regime argues that it is just copying a recent British action off Gibraltar, to release the two vessels, “Iran’s recent actions risk escalating a dangerous situation in the Gulf region. We call on Iran to release the detained vessels and to engage with the international community in steps that help reduce tensions and the prospect of conflict.”

In other words, the NZ Government has declared the seizure of the two ships by the Iranians, to be a violation of international law, and implied that there is exists an 'international community' which agrees.

What does 'international law' really mean? Does it apply to the actions of all countries, or are there 'exceptions'?

That is, if there are other instances when vessels are seized in international waters, does the 'international law' still apply and does NZ condemn the actions and demand that the ships be released?

In 2016, the Womens Boat to Gaza, the Zaytouna-Oliva, attempted to sail into Gaza as a show of solidarity with the men, women and children held in isolation from the rest of the world, even from the rest of historic Palestine where they have family ties. The crew and passenges were all women, including a NZ MP.

The Zaytouna-Oliva was seized, pirated ,in international waters by the Israeli miliary and is still never been returned to its owner.

Mr Peters should be consistent and condemn Israel for this “inexcusable violation of international law.”

Just last year, the Freedom Flotilla 2018 ship, Awda, was seized in international waters. Another act of piracy! The crew and passengers were civilians, humanitarian activists, including a New Zealand union leader, trying to break the extremely harsh blockade of Gaza. The boat was not only seized. The passengers and crew were very roughly handled.

The ship was carrying medical supplies , very badly needed medical supplies, for Gazan hospitals which are at a breaking point. The Awda has not been released. The medical supplies have not been released.

What kind of a regime withholds stolen, desperately needed, medical supplies? How inhuman can a regime be without being condemned by the 'international community' including New Zealand?

Could we please have some comments from political leaders of all parties and also from international lawyers.


© Scoop Media

Top Scoops Headlines


Gordon Campbell: On The Addiction To Chinese Student Fees

Last week, Australian PM Scott Morrison extended its ban on foreign visitors from or passing through from mainland China – including Chinese students - for a third week. New Zealand has dutifully followed suit, with our travel ban ... More>>

Gordon Campbell: On Coronavirus, And The Iowa Debacle

As Bloomberg says, the coronavirus shutdown is creating the world’s biggest work-from-home experiment. On the upside, the mortality rate with the current outbreak is lower than with SARS in 2003, but (for a number of reasons) the economic impact this time ... More>>

Gordon Campbell: On Dodging A Bullet Over The Transport Cost Over-Runs

As New Zealand gears up to begin its $6.8 billion programme of large scale roading projects all around the country, we should be aware of this morning’s sobering headlines from New South Wales, where the cost overruns on major transport projects ... More>>

Gordon Campbell:On Kobemania, Palestine And The Infrastructure Package

Quick quiz to end the week. What deserves the more attention – the death of a US basketball legend, or the end of Palestinian hopes for an independent state? Both died this week, but only one was met with almost total indifference by the global community. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Double Standard That’s Bound To Dominate The Election

Are National really better political managers than Labour, particularly when it comes to running the economy? For many voters – and the business community in particular - their belief in National’s inherent competence is a simple act of faith. More>>

Gordon Campbell : On Dealing With Impeccable, Impeachable Lies

By now, the end game the Republican Senate majority has in mind in their setting of the rules for the impeachment trial of Donald J. Trump is pretty clear to everyone: first deny the Democrats the ability to call witnesses and offer evidence, and then derisively dismiss the charges for lack of evidence. For his part, does former security adviser John Bolton really, really want to testify against his former boss? If there was any competing faction within the Republican Party, there might be some point for Bolton in doing so – but there isn’t. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On Why The Dice Are Loaded Against Women..

If they enter public life, women can expect a type of intense (and contradictory) scrutiny that is rarely applied to their male counterparts... More>>


  • PublicAddress
  • Pundit
  • Kiwiblog