Clinton, Panetta Tell Senate Committee U.S. Must Ratify LOST

By:  Michael Tennant
Clinton, Panetta Tell Senate Committee U.S. Must Ratify LOST

Three top Obama administration officials told a Senate committee that the United States must ratify the Law of the Sea Treaty now.

Three top Obama administration officials argued forcefully Wednesday that the United States should ratify the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, better known as the Law of the Sea Treaty (LOST). Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta, and Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Gen. Martin Dempsey told the Senate Foreign Relations Committee that speedy U.S. ratification of the treaty is of the utmost importance.

“I strongly believe that accession to this treaty is absolutely essential, not only to our economic interests, our diplomatic interests, but I’m here to say that it is extremely important to our national security interests as well,” Panetta, a longtime supporter of LOST, said.

Dempsey, likewise, maintained that “being a member of the Convention would better allow the United States to exercise global security leadership — a critical component of our global strategy.” As “the only permanent member of the U.N. Security Council and the only Arctic nation that” has not ratified LOST, he added, “there are limits to our ability to build coalitions for important international security efforts.”

Clinton said the treaty was “critical to the leadership and security of the United States.”

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