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Free transit and innocent passage as internationally recognized maritime rights present few problems. Complexities arise when some states - dissatisfied with innocent passage because of alleged weaknesses in its operation and implementation - seek to modify or completely transform this right into the broader right of free transit through certain territorial waters in international straits in disregard of coastal state needs. Other states assert there can be neither a re-evaluation nor a modification of the right of innocent passage and the right of free transit until agreement is first reached on the extent of expanded fishing rights and rights for exploitation of sea bed minerals. Indeed, the very determination of what the territorial seas include is tied to an acceptable resolution of these two complex issues.



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