IMO Legal Affairs Committee Addresses Seafarer Abandonment and Maritime Crimes

IMO Legal Affairs Committee discusses abandonment of seafarers
The IMO Legal Affairs Committee will convene for its 111th session in April 2024 to address critical legal matters including seafarer abandonment, fair treatment of detained seafarers, fraudulent ship registrations, liability limits, and guidelines for maritime autonomous surface vessels. The committee plays a crucial role in ensuring the legal framework for maritime operations.
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The IMO’s Legal Affairs Committee will convene for its 111th session in London to discuss various legal matters under the organization’s jurisdiction. One key issue on the agenda is the suspension and abandonment of seafarers by shipowners, with a significant increase in reported cases over the years. The Committee plans to establish a task force to review and update the joint ILO/IMO database on abandoned seafarers, with further consideration by the Joint Tripartite Working Group.

Another topic to be addressed is the fair treatment of seafarers detained on suspicion of committing maritime crimes, with the Committee working on draft guidelines for their protection. Additionally, the Committee will examine fraudulent ship registrations and recommend actions to prevent such occurrences, including the development of guidelines for vessel registration.

Other items on the Committee’s agenda include assessing the need to change liability limits for damages caused by ships, finalizing guidance for the proper implementation of IMO liability agreements, and addressing legal issues related to Maritime Autonomous Surface Ships (MASS). The Committee will also discuss piracy and armed robbery of ships, staying abreast of developments in legal issues while considering proposals for combatting piracy in specific regions.

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