The International Criminal Court (ICC) lacks jurisdiction over international terrorism. Despite related academic literature, no academic publication discusses whether the ICC should have jurisdiction over international maritime terrorism. This deserves attention due to the increasing importance of this global phenomenon in the last few decades. Consequently, this Article considers whether international maritime terrorism should be included in the ICC’s jurisdiction. First, it discusses international maritime terrorism as a manifestation of the emerging international crime of international terrorism, examining i) whether there is an accepted or an emerging legal definition of international maritime terrorism, ii) whether international maritime terrorism is a serious threat to or attack against international peace and security, and iii) whether there is an emerging customary rule criminalizing international maritime terrorism. Then, the ICC law—particularly the Rome Statute, travaux préparatoires, and amendment proposals—and the ICC’s practice on crimes committed by international terrorist groups or involving serious threats to maritime security are examined to determine the feasibility, advisability, or even necessity to incorporate international maritime terrorism into the Rome Statute. Finally, this Article argues for incorporation based on three main normative grounds: i) better protection of the marine environment (environmental security); ii) contribution towards filling important jurisdictional gaps concerning maritime zones; and iii) contribution towards coherence across supranational courts on international maritime terrorism and maritime security.

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