Europeans cruise to occupied territorybuying real estate there.
Apparently Europeans do no take their governments’ warnings about doing business in occupied territories too seriously. A German-owned, Portuguese-flagged, Greek-based cruise ship, the Ocean Majesty, paid a port call to Yalta this week, in Russian-occupied Crimea. The 500 mostly German tourists had a nice day of sightseeing, to the outrage of Ukraine, which has passed a law banning such activities.
(The incident seems to be part of a pattern of German businesses being visibly active in Crimea.)
But as I show in my new paper, Economic Dealings With Occupied Territories (currently making the rounds among law review), international law does not ban economic activity with illegally annexed or administered territories. European government suggestions that “economic activities (including services like tourism) entail [international] legal and economic risks” are not backed by actual law, and the German cruise operators know it. Alternately, they may know that if it is thought to be illegal, it is only in one specific context.
Make sure to read the whole thing, to follow all the links and to look at the rest of the pictures. The photos (including the one at the top of this post) are by Wilson Shirley, an undergraduate at Northwestern University who conducted research in Turkish-occupied Northern Cyprus this summer.
The Europeans are just so consistent in their approach to occupied territory, aren't they? /Sigh