VESSEL SOVEREIGN IMMUNITY AND CREW LIST POLICY

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***THIS IS A 2 SECTION MESSAGE COLLATED BY DMDS***

SUBJ: VESSEL SOVEREIGN IMMUNITY AND CREW LIST POLICY
PASS TO ALL OFFICE CODES:
FM CNO WASHINGTON DC//N3/N5//
TO NAVADMIN
CNO WASHINGTON DC//N3/N5//
UNCLAS //N05300//
NAVADMIN 288/05
MSGID/GENADMIN/CNO WASHINGTON DC/N3N5/NOV//
SUBJ/VESSEL SOVEREIGN IMMUNITY AND CREW LIST POLICY//



REF/A/MSG/CNO WASHINGTON DC/032330ZMAR1988/-/NOTAL//
REF/B/MSG/CNO WASHINGTON DC/101455ZOCT1989//
REF/C/DOC/DOD/24MAY2005//



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REF/D/MSG/CNO WASHINGTON DC/182335ZDEC2002//
REF/E/MSG/SECSTATE WASHINGTON DC/152102ZOCT1985/-/NOTAL//
REF/F/MSG/COMSC WASHINGTON DC/272143ZMAY2003/-/NOTAL//
NARR/REF A IS NAVOP 024/88 AND REF B IS NAVOP 122/89 WHICH DELINEATE
OPNAV POLICY REGARDING SOVEREIGN IMMUNITY AND CREW LISTS.  REF C IS
THE DOD FOREIGN CLEARANCE GUIDE, DOD 4500.54-G.  REF D IS NAVADMIN
408/02, WHICH DISCUSSES UNITED STATES POLICY FOR FACILITATING VISITS
BY FOREIGN SOVEREIGN IMMUNE VESSELS TO UNITED STATES PORTS.  REF E
ASSERTS SOVEREIGN IMMUNE STATUS FOR ALL MSC UNITED STATES FLAGGED
TIME CHARTERED VESSELS.  REF F SUMMARIZES UNITED STATES POLICY AND
PRACTICE REGARDING SOVEREIGN IMMUNE STATUS OF MILITARY SEALIFT
COMMAND (MSC) VESSELS.//
POC/WALT FREDERICK/CAPT/OPNAV N3N5L/LOC:WASHINGTON, DC
/TEL:(703) 692-9373/EMAIL:NIPRNET:  WALTER.FREDERICK(AT)NAVY.MIL
/EMAIL:SIPRNET:  FREDERICK.WALTER(AT)CNO.NAVY.SMIL.MIL//
RMKS/1.  THIS NAVADMIN CANCELS REFS A AND B AND REISSUES NAVY
SOVEREIGN IMMUNITY POLICY ON PROVIDING CREW LISTS AND OTHER
INFORMATION FROM NAVY SOVEREIGN IMMUNE VESSELS TO FOREIGN
GOVERNMENTS.  IN ADDITION TO HEADQUARTERS-LEVEL STAFF, THIS MESSAGE
IS OF INTEREST TO CONUS NAVY REGIONAL COMMANDERS, U.S. NAVAL



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ATTACHES, AND SHIP COMMANDING OFFICERS/MASTERS.  NAVAL COMPONENT
COMMANDERS SHALL ENSURE ADHERENCE TO THE CREW LIST POLICY SET FORTH
IN THIS MESSAGE.
2.  SCOPE AND APPLICABILITY.  THIS POLICY APPLIES TO PROVISION OF
CREW LISTS AND OTHER INFORMATION OF MILITARY AND NON-MILITARY
PERSONNEL ON BOARD UNITED STATES SOVEREIGN IMMUNE VESSELS TO FOREIGN
GOVERNMENTS AND IS BROKEN DOWN IN TWO PARTS:  USS VESSELS AND MSC
VESSELS.  POLICY FOR USS VESSELS IS CONTAINED IN PARAGRAPHS 5 AND 6.
POLICY FOR MSC SOVEREIGN IMMUNE VESSELS IS CONTAINED IN PARAGRAPH 7.
POLICY FOR USN AIRCRAFT VISITING FOREIGN COUNTRIES IS SET BY REF E.
3.  UNITED STATES POLICY FOR FOREIGN SOVEREIGN IMMUNE VESSELS
VISITING UNITED STATES PORTS, AS WELL AS U.S. NAVY'S RESPONSIBILITY
TO MAKE THIS POLICY KNOWN TO THESE VISITING VESSELS WELL IN ADVANCE
OF PORT VISITS, AND TO WORK WITH U.S. FEDERAL, STATE, AND LOCAL
OFFICIALS TO ENSURE THESE PRINCIPLES ARE RESPECTED AND ADHERED TO,
IS SET FORTH IN REF D.  IN SUMMARY, OFFICIAL UNITED STATES POLICY
FOR FOREIGN SOVEREIGN IMMUNE VESSELS VISITING THE UNITED STATES IS
TO ACCORD THESE VESSELS THE SAME SOVEREIGN IMMUNITY THAT THE UNITED
STATES CLAIMS FOR ITS SOVEREIGN IMMUNE VESSELS.  THIS PRIVILEGE
INCLUDES, IN RELEVANT PART, NOT REQUIRING THESE VESSELS TO PROVIDE



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EITHER A CREW LIST OR ANY FORM OF LIBERTY LOG FOR THOSE PERSONNEL
DEBARKING THE SOVEREIGN IMMUNE VESSEL IN UNITED STATES PORTS.  THE
NAVY REGIONAL COMMANDER FOR THE AREA/PORT VISITED BY A SOVEREIGN
IMMUNE VESSEL SHALL MONITOR AND COORDINATE ALL ARRANGEMENTS FOR
THESE VISITS WITH THE APPROPRIATE FEDERAL, STATE, AND LOCAL
AUTHORITIES TO ENSURE THIS PRIVILEGE IS PROVIDED TO THESE VESSELS.
THESE ACTIONS ARE ESSENTIAL TO OUR ABILITY TO RECEIVE RECIPROCAL
TREATMENT FOR USN SOVEREIGN IMMUNE VESSELS IN FOREIGN PORTS.
4.  SOVEREIGN IMMUNITY.  AS A MATTER OF CUSTOMARY INTERNATIONAL LAW,
ALL VESSELS OWNED OR OPERATED BY A STATE AND USED, FOR THE TIME
BEING, ONLY ON GOVERNMENT NON-COMMERCIAL SERVICE ARE ENTITLED TO
SOVEREIGN IMMUNITY.  THIS MEANS THAT SUCH VESSELS ARE IMMUNE FROM
ARREST OR SEARCH (WHETHER IN FOREIGN INTERNAL OR TERRITORIAL WATERS,
OR IN INTERNATIONAL WATERS); IMMUNE FROM FOREIGN TAXATION; EXEMPT
FROM ANY FOREIGN STATE REGULATION REQUIRING FLYING THE FLAG OF SUCH
FOREIGN STATE EITHER IN ITS PORTS OR WHILE PASSING THROUGH ITS
TERRITORIAL SEA; AND ENTITLED TO EXCLUSIVE CONTROL OVER PERSONS ON
BOARD SUCH VESSELS WITH RESPECT TO ACTS PERFORMED ON BOARD.  THE
PRIVILEGE OF SOVEREIGN IMMUNITY INCLUDES PROTECTING THE IDENTITY OF
PERSONNEL, STORES, WEAPONS, OR OTHER PROPERTY ON BOARD THE VESSEL.



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5.  USS VESSELS SOVEREIGN IMMUNITY POLICY.  THE UNITED STATES
ASSERTS THE PRIVILEGE OF SOVEREIGN IMMUNITY FOR ALL USS VESSELS AS
DESCRIBED ABOVE.  ACCORDINGLY, PROVIDING A LIST OF CREW MEMBERS (TO
INCLUDE MILITARY AND NON-MILITARY PERSONNEL) OR ANY OTHER PASSENGERS
ON BOARD A USS VESSEL AS A CONDITION OF ENTRY INTO A PORT OR TO
SATISFY LOCAL IMMIGRATION OFFICIALS UPON ARRIVAL IS PROHIBITED.
6.  RESPONSE TO HOST NATION REQUESTS FOR PERSONNEL LISTS FROM
VISITING USS VESSELS.  MOST HOST NATIONS DO NOT REQUIRE THAT
VISITING USS VESSELS PROVIDE A CREW LIST AS A CONDITION OF PORT
ENTRY.  FOR THESE NATIONS, INFORMATION ABOUT PERSONNEL ON BOARD THE
VESSEL SHOULD NOT BE VOLUNTEERED.  FOR HOST NATIONS THAT REQUEST A
VISITING USS VESSEL PROVIDE A LIST OF PERSONNEL, NAVAL COMPONENT
COMMANDERS SHALL ADHERE TO THE FOLLOWING PRACTICE:
A.  INITIAL RESPONSE.  IN RESPONSE TO SUCH REQUESTS, INFORM THE HOST
NATION THAT UNITED STATES POLICY EXEMPTS FOREIGN SOVEREIGN IMMUNE
VESSELS VISITING THE UNITED STATES FROM THE REQUIREMENT TO PROVIDE
CREW LISTS IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE SAME SOVEREIGN IMMUNITY PRINCIPLES
THAT UNITED STATES SOVEREIGN IMMUNE VESSELS CLAIM (REF D).
B.  CREW LIST.  USS VESSELS SHALL NOT PROVIDE A CREW LIST TO HOST
NATION AUTHORITIES UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES.  FOR PURPOSES OF THIS



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PARAGRAPH, ALL MILITARY AND NON-MILITARY PERSONNEL ON BOARD ALL USS
VESSELS ARE TREATED IDENTICALLY.  THERE IS NO DIFFERENCE IN THE
APPLICATION OF THE CREW LIST POLICY FOR MILITARY VERSUS NON-MILITARY
PERSONNEL.
C.  FURTHER GUIDANCE.  IF THE HOST NATION CONSIDERS THESE
ALTERNATIVES TO BE UNACCEPTABLE AND CONTINUES PRESSING FOR MORE
INFORMATION, COMMANDING OFFICERS SHALL CONSULT WITH THE RESPONSIBLE
UNITED STATES EMBASSY COUNTRY TEAM AND NOTIFY THEIR CHAIN OF COMMAND
UP TO THE NAVAL COMPONENT COMMANDER.  NAVAL COMPONENT COMMANDERS MAY
PROVIDE GUIDANCE TO COMMANDERS/COMMANDING OFFICERS AS DELEGATED BY
CNO.
7.  MSC VESSELS SOVEREIGN IMMUNITY POLICY.  ALTHOUGH MSC U.S.
FLAGGED VOYAGE CHARTERED VESSELS ARE ENTITLED TO FULL SOVEREIGN
IMMUNITY STATUS, THE UNITED STATES CONTINUES, AS A MATTER OF POLICY,
TO CLAIM ONLY IMMUNITY FROM ARREST AND TAXATION FOR SUCH VESSELS.
THE UNITED STATES ALSO, AS A MATTER OF POLICY, DOES NOT CURRENTLY
UNCLAS
SUBJ: VESSEL SOVEREIGN IMMUNITY AND CREW LIST POLICY
CLAIM SOVEREIGN IMMUNITY FOR MSC FOREIGN FLAGGED VOYAGE OR MSC
FOREIGN FLAGGED TIME CHARTERED VESSELS.  THESE VESSELS MAY THEREFORE
PROVIDE CREW LISTS TO FOREIGN AUTHORITIES AS A CONDITION OF ENTRY
INTO A PORT OR TO SATISFY LOCAL IMMIGRATION OFFICIALS UPON ARRIVAL.
CIRCUMSTANCES COULD ARISE, HOWEVER, THAT NECESSITATE AN ASSERTION OF
FULL SOVEREIGN IMMUNITY FOR MSC U.S. FLAGGED VOYAGE CHARTERED
VESSELS.  IN SUCH CASES, SPECIFIC GUIDANCE SHALL BE PROVIDED AT THAT
TIME.  PER REFS E AND F, ALL OTHER UNITED STATES FLAGGED MSC VESSELS
ASSERT FULL SOVEREIGN IMMUNITY.  THESE VESSELS NORMALLY SUBMIT
DIPLOMATIC CLEARANCE REQUESTS BEFORE ENTERING A FOREIGN PORT.  MSC
SOVEREIGN IMMUNE VESSELS THAT SUBMIT A DIPLOMATIC CLEARANCE REQUEST
BEFORE A PORT VISIT MAY, AT THE MASTERS DISCRETION, PROVIDE A SHORE



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PARTY LIST TO THE HOST NATION IF REQUESTED.  THIS SHORE PARTY LIST
MAY CONTAIN THE NAMES AND PASSPORT NUMBERS OF THOSE PERSONNEL WHO
WILL GO ASHORE DURING THE PORT VISIT.  OTHER INFORMATION, SUCH AS
HEALTH RECORD, JOB DESCRIPTION, OR EMPLOYER, SHALL NOT BE PROVIDED.
8.  EFFECT OF EXISTING AGREEMENTS.  THIS POLICY IS NOT INTENDED TO
ABROGATE OR MODIFY EXISTING INTERNATIONAL AGREEMENTS, SUCH AS STATUS
OF FORCES AGREEMENTS OR MILITARY BASING AGREEMENTS THAT ADDRESS THE
ISSUE OF CREW LISTS.  IF SUCH AN INTERNATIONAL AGREEMENT EXISTS
BETWEEN THE UNITED STATES AND THE HOST NATION, COMMANDERS SHALL
FOLLOW THE OBLIGATIONS OF THAT AGREEMENT.  NAVAL COMPONENT
COMMANDERS SHOULD CONSULT THEIR FLEET OR FORCE JUDGE ADVOCATE FOR
FURTHER GUIDANCE ON SUCH ISSUES.
9.  ONCE PIERSIDE, USN SOVEREIGN IMMUNE VESSELS THAT ENCOUNTER
DIFFICULTIES IN DISEMBARKING PERSONNEL IN FOREIGN COUNTRIES WITHIN
THE GUIDELINES SET FORTH ABOVE SHOULD REPORT THE INCIDENT TO CNO VIA
OPREP-3 NAVY BLUE REPORTING PROCEDURES.
10.  RELEASED BY VADM J. G. MORGAN, JR., N3/N5//
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