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A court to judge the pirates? A contact group formed

(B2) The idea has been around for a long time. But the increase in pirate attacks and the real legal headache, with the possibility of impunity for sea bandits, haunts people's minds.

Around twenty countries and five international organizations (*) thus formed – during a meeting at the UN last week – a “Contact Group on Piracy off the coast of Somalia”. Known by its English acronym, CGPCS, the members are committed to “ examine ways to build the capacity of countries willing to prosecute suspects in custody and pirates ". He also promised to examine other means of dealing with piracy, including international judicial mechanisms ».

Already before Christmas, German Defense Minister Franz-Josef Jung proposed setting up an international tribunal to prosecute the pirates. A tribunal for the law of the sea exists in Hamburg but it does not have jurisdiction in matters of piracy.


(*) Australia, China, Djibouti, Egypt, India, Japan, Kenya, Republic of Korea, Oman, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Transitional Federal Government in Somalia, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, United States, Yemen – Denmark, Spain , France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Netherlands, Spain, United Kingdom + the African Union, the European Union, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), the UN General Secretariat and the International Maritime Organization (IMO).


Nicolas Gros Verheyde

Chief editor of the B2 site. Graduated in European law from the University of Paris I Pantheon Sorbonne and listener to the 65th session of the IHEDN (Institut des Hautes Etudes de la Défense Nationale. Journalist since 1989, founded B2 - Bruxelles2 in 2008. EU/NATO correspondent in Brussels for Sud-Ouest (previously West-France and France-Soir).