Russia: Warships

Foreign and Commonwealth Office written question – answered on 9th July 2019.

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Photo of Lord West of Spithead Lord West of Spithead Labour

To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon on 20 June (HL16343), what assessment they have made of the case for reviewing (1) the Agreement Between the Government of The United States of America and the Government of The Union of Soviet Socialist Republics on the Prevention of Incidents On and Over the High Seas (INCSEA), and (2) the Agreement Between the Government of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and the Government of The Union of Soviet Socialist Republics concerning the Prevention of Incidents at Sea beyond the Territorial Sea, following the recent close naval encounter and near collision of United States and Russian ships in the East China Sea.

Photo of Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon Minister of State

​With respect to the Agreement Between the Government of The United States of America and the Government of The Union of Soviet Socialist Republics on the Prevention of Incidents On and Over the High Seas (INCSEA), that there is a bilateral agreement between the US and Russia and as such is a matter for those States.

The Agreement between the British Government and Russia, formerly the Soviet Union since 1986 includes a provision for an annual review to update its terms. The last review discussions were held in April 2017. These discussions provide a forum in which both parties can raise concerns regarding recent incidents at sea and agree further risk reduction measures to improve transparency and communication.

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