Third world criticizes pact on seabed by industrial lands
A group of 77 developing nations accused eight industrialized countries this week of signing an illegal agreement on deep-sea mining in defiance of the United Nations Law of the Sea.
On Aug. 3, the United States, Britain, France, Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, Belgium, and West Germany signed an agreement aimed at avoiding disputes over conflicting claims by companies to dig minerals outside territorial waters.
The group of 77 said ''the convention of the Law of the Sea is the only legally acceptable international regime applicable to the seabed and its resources.'' The UN Law of the Sea convention was concluded in 1982 but is not in force because an insufficient number of states have ratified it.