Join a group of 20-25 CIPL members at a monthly brown bag (BYO) lunch to hear short presentations by specialists on recent developments in international law, followed by general discussion.
The status of islands and their peoples has raised a series of issues for international law over time. From the 1921 Aaland Islands case to the current Chagos Archipelago Advisory Opinion, islands and their peoples have occupied governments, the League of Nations, the United Nations, and international courts and tribunals. Self-determination for island peoples remains a live issue in international law which Australia is familiar with given its history with Papua New Guinea and Nauru, and external territories such as Norfolk Island. In 2018 a self-determination referendum is scheduled for New Caledonia which if successful will impact upon the legal landscape of the region. This paper revisits some of these modern challenges faced by international law with respect to the status of islands and islanders. Attention will be given to the significance of independent island States to declare themselves as ‘archipelagic States’ under the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea and the implications this has for maritime entitlements and maritime boundaries.