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MAGALLONA VS ERMITA
ISSUE: Whether or not Republic Act 9522 is unconstitutional for reducing the Philippine Maritime Territory.
FACTS: Magallona, et. al., assailed the constitutionality of Republic Act 9522 which mandates the adjustment of the country’s archipelagic baselines and classifying the baseline regime of nearby territories. Historically, Republic Act No. 3046 is the ruling law which demarcates the maritime baselines of the Philippines, as an archipelago. Republic Act No. 3046 follows the framing of the Convention on Territorial Sea and the Contiguous Zone of 1958, which codifies the sovereign rights of the states over their territorial sea. Republic Act No. 9522 aims to amend Republic Act No. 3046 by complying with the terms of United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea III which took between 1973 and 1982.
DECISION: No. United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea III (UNCLOS III) has nothing to do with the acquisition or loss territory.
RATIO DECIDENDI: It is a multilateral treaty regulating sea use rights over maritime zones. Baseline laws such as Republic Act 9522 are enacted pursuant to UNCLOS III and only serves to mark out specific basepoints from which baselines are drawn straight or curve, and to serve and to start as geographic starting points to measure the breadth of maritime zones and continental shelf.
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