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Questions and Answers about the Government Accountability Office (GAO)

The following is a May 31, 2005, letter from Myron H. Nordquist to Dr. Walter Gary Sharp, Sr., Director of Legal Research for International, Comparative, and Foreign Law at the Law Library of Congress. Links to the related documents can be found at the bottom of the page.

May 31, 2005

Dr. Walter Gary Sharp, Sr.
Director of Legal Research for
International, Comparative, and Foreign Law
The Law Library of Congress
James Madison Memorial Building, Room 240
101 Independence Avenue, S.E.
Washington, DC 20540-3200

Dear Dr. Sharp:
        This letter is written in my capacity as Editor in Chief of the six volume series titled "United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, 1982, Commentary". The Commentary contains an article by article analysis of the 1982 Convention, as modified by a 1994 Agreement. The approximately 5,000 pages of sources and comments were prepared over several decades with contributions from over 100 scholar-diplomats from around the world, most of whom were active participants in the negotiations at the Third UN Conference on the Law of the Sea. In my own case, I was the Secretary of the U.S. Delegation to the Conference during the period when the most critical provisions of the Convention were drafted. Attachment 1 is a letter sent to the GAO by three Senators which contains 35 questions. Attachment 2 is a document that identifies the sources for previous answers to 30 of the 35 questions posed to the GAO. These responses were given to the Senate during extensive hearings on the Convention held over the past several years. Attachment 3 contains responses to the five "new" questions that were prepared following the collegiate method we used successfully in writing an objective commentary on the 1982 Convention. The Library of Congress is, of course, free to make whatever use it wishes of these materials, including release to the public.
        Attachment 4 contains the law of the sea questions submitted by Senator Richard G. Lugar and the responses thereto by Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice during her nomination hearing. Since Attachment 1 was prepared before Attachment 4, these responses may be especially relevant for consideration.

Myron H. Nordquist

cc: Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice      Senator Richard G. Lugar


Attachment 1

Attachment 2

Attachment 3

Attachment 4