Could clear boundaries between Australia and East Timor settle resource disputes?
By
Romi Levine

Source:
25 Mar 2014 - 7:52 AM  UPDATED 25 Mar 2014 - 12:20 PM

(Transcript from World News Radio)

 

It's been 12 years since Australia withdrew its recognition of the International Court of Justice's jurisdiction over maritime boundary disputes.

 

Australia had been in a dispute with East Timor over Australia's drilling for oil close to East Timor's coast.

 

At the time, Australia maintained that such disputes were better settled by negotiation rather than litigation.

 

East Timor has taken up that challenge and is now in an arbitration case against the Australian government.

 

East Timor is also challenging Australia, back in the ICJ, over a separate oil and gas treaty.

 

East Timor alleges that the treaty talks weren't carried out in good faith because it was spied on by the Australian government during negotiations over rights to the oil and gas reserves.

 

The Timor Sea Justice Campaign is calling for permanent maritime boundaries between East Timor and Australia to resolve the dispute, and any future boundary disagreements.

 

The group's Tom Clarke explained why to Romi Levine.

 

(Click on audio tab to listen to this item)