(a) General ConsiderationsWhile the low-water line is a general rule, its application may be impractical in some situations due to a highly complicated coastal configuration. In such case, the straight baseline system may come into play. Straight baselines can be defined as:a system of straight lines joining specified or discrete points on the low-water line, usually known as straight baseline turning points, which may be used only in localities where the coastline is deeply indented and cut into, or if there is a fringe of islands along the coast in its immediate vicinity. The essential difference between the straight baseline system and the normal baseline system is that under the straight baseline system, baselines are drawn across water, not along the coast. Article 7(1) of the LOSC, which followed Article 4 of the Geneva Convention on the Territorial Sea and the Contiguous Zone (hereinafter the TSC), provides as follows: In localities where the coastline is deeply indented and cut into, or if there is a fringe of islandsalong the coast in its immediate vicinity, the method of straight baselines joining appropriate points may be employed in drawing the baseline from which the breadth of the territorial sea is measured.The language of this provision suggests that the use of straight baselines is permissive, and the coastal State can freely determine whether or not to apply the method of straight baselines where a coast meets the conditions set out in Article 7. The coastal State may also combine different methods when determining baselines by virtue of Article 14.While Article 7(1) does not specify whether the appropriate points should lie on the charted low-water line, it is generally considered that the basepoints should normally lie on the low-water line rather than further inland. This view is reinforced by Article 7(2), which explicitly refers…

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