How far are Pakistan’s maritime boundaries?

By | March 1, 2021

How far is Pakistan's maritime boundaryThe Pakistani navy has claimed that it has foiled an attempt by an Indian submarine to enter Pakistani territory. A statement issued by the Navy spokesman said that the presence of an Indian submarine in Pakistani waters was detected and it was prevented from entering Pakistani waters.

What are international maritime boundaries?

Former Pakistan Navy Admiral Iftikhar Rao told the BBC that the maritime boundaries of any country are divided into different zones. A baseline is drawn on the coast of this country. From this baseline to 12 nautical miles to the sea is the ‘Territorial Waters’. It’s just like the land border and it’s the first sea boundary.
After these 12 nautical miles in the second boundary, the area of ​​12 nautical miles is called a ‘contiguous zone’, which is a total of 24 nautical miles. It is governed by the country’s customs and trade laws. He said that the third limit (Special Economic Zone) is called ‘Special Economic Zone’ and this limit is 200 nautical miles beyond the baseline of this country. To this extent, only a country can engage in economic activities such as exploration of minerals in the sea, fishing, etc. Even further, the boundaries of the ‘Extension of Continental Shelf’ begin. It also has some maritime rights under the United Nations.

What are the boundaries of Pakistan’s seawater?

Talking about the maritime boundaries of Pakistan, former Admiral Iftikhar Rao said that the maritime boundaries of Pakistan have been determined in the same way as other countries. Up to 12 nautical miles is the ‘territorial water’. Similarly, Pakistan has maritime boundaries up to 24 nautical miles, ‘Continuous Zone’, up to 200 nautical miles, ‘Special Economic Zone’ and ‘Extension of Continental Shells’. Pakistan had applied to the United Nations for an extension of continental shells, which has been approved.

What are the international common waters or boundaries?

No country’s warships or submarines are allowed to enter any country’s ‘territorial waters’ and ‘contiguous zones’. However, foreign merchant ships may be allowed to pass through this water. Admiral Rao said that the sea is very big so the special economic zone ie 200 nautical miles of seawater has been declared as ‘Common Heritage of Mankind’ (common heritage of humanity). That sea is common to all countries. Any ship of any country can go in this water.
He added that “no other country can engage in any economic activity in the seawater of the special economic zone, but any other country’s merchant and warships can pass through this water.” However, the submarine is not allowed to pass under the sea. He said that it is called ‘Innocent Passage’. Which is in accordance with UN maritime law.

Peace or Tension: How to Stop an Enemy Warship?

Former Admiral Iftikhar Rao said that if we talk about the alleged attempt of an Indian submarine to enter Pakistani waters, then this submarine was not in Pakistan’s defensive waters. But our special economic zone was within maritime boundaries, so as these are the days of tension, if we had targeted this submarine after its discovery, we would not have violated any international law. Because it is difficult not only to trace a submarine but also to keep an eye on it. In this regard, Admiral Ahmad Tasneem, a member of the Pakistan Navy, said that the procedure depends on the situation in the country and government policy. He said that there is a difference between a warship and a submarine because the warship is visible at sea level and it is given a warning in times of peace. But the purpose of the submarine is to spy, to obtain intelligence, the method is different. Sometimes it is chased and sometimes a warning is issued. Former Admiral Iftikhar Rao said that the Pakistan Navy not only tracked the Indian submarine but also forced it to come close to the water level by keeping an eye on it What and the message to India that we do not want to intensify the war frenzy. And that’s why the Pakistan Navy pushed them back into their waters. No official statement has been issued by the Pakistan Navy on where the Indian submarine was traced in Pakistan’s territorial waters, but former Admiral Iftikhar Rao and Admiral Ahmad Tasneem agree that the Indian submarine was located in the waters of Pakistan‘s special economic zone. Caught at about 100 nautical miles. It should be noted that this incident of an alleged attempt by Indian submarines to enter Pakistani territory has taken place at a time when border tensions between Pakistan and India are on the rise.

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