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Legal first paves way for future carrier operations

20 October 2016
A legal precedent has been set as for the first time the senior lawyers from the US Navy and the Royal Navy – and members of their staffs – have held formal joint talks.

Vice Admiral James Crawford III (second from the left) is the Judge Advocate General of the United States Navy.

And sitting opposite (second from the right) is Commodore Andrew Jameson OBE RN, Commodore Naval Legal Services, who hosted the talks at HMS Excellent.

The main item on the table for discussion: carrier operations.

We are delighted to be working with the US Navy JAG to help maximise our legal readiness in support of our nation’s return to carrier strike.

Commodore Andrew Jameson RN

With the RN on the cusp of returning to ‘big deck’ aircraft carrier operations when HMS Queen Elizabeth joins the Fleet, it is keen to learn about how the USN approaches all the complex legal issues associated with operating a carrier strike group – from advising on rules of engagement through to compliance with international treaties on the law of the sea.

“Our American partners lead the world in carrier strike group operations.

"So we are delighted to be working with the US Navy JAG to help maximise our legal readiness in support of our nation’s return to carrier strike” said Cdre Jameson.

He is responsible for four dozen lawyers in the Senior Service, 30 of whom are in legal posts at any one time.

His American counterpart can call on 1200 lawyers – based in the US, deployed at sea including on carriers, or in one of 98 offices around the globe.

"The U.S. Navy JAG Corps welcomes this opportunity to increase collaboration with the Royal Navy as our respective Navies continue working together as partners to maintain readiness and security across the globe,” said Vice Admiral Crawford.

“The work we are doing with our Royal Navy counterparts is an important step in increasing our Navies' interoperability, and we look forward to further cooperation.”

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