The Law of the Sea negotiations were inordinately long and complex. The author of this monograph, who followed them closely as an unofficial observer, gives a play-by-play account of how they dealt with the key questions involved in exploitation of minerals of the deep seabed, "the common heritage of mankind," and in the establishment of an international authority to regulate it, the issue on which the U.S. decided not to go along with the treaty signed by 118 other states in 1982. The reader may come close to suffocation by the mass of technical detail, but can be grateful for so full a background and so intelligent a commentary both on the negotiations and on the issues.
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