United Nations Security Council Resolution 1918 on Somalia calls on states to criminalize piracy under national law.

The Security Council recognized that the continued threat of piracy and armed robbery off the coast of Somalia and the failure to prosecute those responsible have undermined international anti-piracy objectives. Prior to this resolution, Russia had proposed the creation of a special tribunal after Kenya decided to stop prosecution of suspected pirates on its soil. Kenya also rescinded agreements made with the European Union, United States, Great Britain, Canada, China, and Denmark to prosecute suspected pirates.

In this resolution, the Security Council asked member states to consider prosecuting suspected pirates and enabling the imprisonment of those convicted. Thus, in an effort to create possible venues to try suspected pirates, the Security Council tasked the Secretary-General with presenting a report within three months enumerating possible options to assist in “prosecuting and imprisoning persons responsible for acts of piracy and armed robbery at sea off the coast of Somalia, including, in particular, options for creating special domestic chambers possibly with international components, a regional tribunal or an international tribunal.”

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