Article 1

1.1.4 Living resources


The Convention does not explicitly apply to the use of living resources that occur in international watercourses (for example the regulation of fishing and harvesting of other aquatic animals) except insofar as other uses are affected by such activities.93 The interpretation of the Convention is therefore intended to avoid the application of the general principles of the Convention to fishing rights, unless such rights have an impact on other uses.94 Additionally, it can be inferred that Article 20 prohibits fishing when it is at variance with the general obligation to protect and preserve the ecosystem of the international watercourse.95 Also, Article 22 relates to the protection of fish and other aquatic animals in respect to the duty of prevent ‘the introduction of species, alien or new, into an international watercourse which may have effects detrimental to the ecosystem of the watercourse’.

93 UNGA Sixth Committee (51st Session) ‘Report of the Sixth Committee Convening as the Working Group of the Whole’ (11 April 1997) UN Doc A/51/869 at 4.

94 UN Doc A/51/869 at 4. For commentary see Tanzi A and Arcari M, The United Nations Convention on the Law of International Watercourses: A Framework for Sharing (Kluwer Law International 2001).

95 Ibid at 53.

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