×

UPSC Courses

DNA banner

DAILY NEWS ANALYSIS

  • 01 September, 2021

  • 14 Min Read

International Court Of Justice - ICJ

About ICJ

  • The International Court of Justice (ICJ) is the principal judicial body of the UN.
  • Established in 1946 to replace the Permanent Court of International Justice, the ICJ mainly operates under the statute of its predecessor, which is included in the UN Charter.
  • It is the principal judicial organ of the United Nations, situated at the Peace Palace in The Hague (Netherlands).
  • It has 193 state parties and current President is Ronny Abraham.

Functions of ICJ

It has two primary functions:

  • To settle legal disputes submitted by States in accordance with established international laws, and
  • To act as an advisory board on issues submitted to it by authorized international organizations.

Who nominates the candidates?

  • Every state government, party to the Charter, designates a group who propose candidates for the office of ICJ judges.
  • This group includes four members/jurists of the Permanent Court of Arbitration (machinery which enables arbitral tribunals to be set up as desired and facilitates their work) also picked by the State.
  • Countries not part of the statute follow the same procedure where a group nominates the candidates.
  • Each group is limited to nominate four candidates, two of whom could be of their nationality. Within a fixed duration set by the Secretary-General, the names of the candidates have to be sent to him/her.

What are the qualifications of ICJ judges?

  • A judge should have a high moral character.
  • A judge should fit to the qualifications of appointment of highest judicial officers as prescribed by their respective states or.
  • A judge should be a juriconsult of recognized competence in international law.
  • The 15 judges of the Court are distributed as per the regions:
  1. Three from Africa.
  2. Two from Latin America and Caribbean.
  3. Three from Asia.
  4. Five from Western Europe and other states.
  5. Two from Eastern Europe.

Features of ICJ

  • The Court is composed of 15 judges, who are elected for terms of office of nine years by the United Nations General Assembly and the Security Council.
  • These organs vote simultaneously but separately.
  • In order to be elected, a candidate must receive an absolute majority of the votes in both bodies.
  • In order to ensure a measure of continuity, one third of the Court is elected every three years and Judges are eligible for re-election.
  • ICJ is assisted by a Registry, its administrative organ.
  • Its official languages are English and French.
  • Unlike other organs of international organizations, the ICJ is not composed of representatives of governments. Members of the Court are independent judges whose first task, before taking up their duties, is to make a solemn declaration in open court that they will exercise their powers impartially and conscientiously.
  • In order to guarantee his or her independence, no Member of the Court can be dismissed unless, in the unanimous opinion of the other Members, he/she no longer fulfils the required conditions. This has in fact never happened.
  • Judge Dalveer Bhandar is the member of the ICJ since 27 April 2012.

Functioning of ICJ

  • ICJ acts as a world court with two primary objectives given above.
  • Only States which are members of the United Nations and which have become parties to the Statute of the Court or which have accepted its jurisdiction under certain conditions, are parties to contentious cases.
  • States have no permanent representatives accredited to the Court. They normally communicate with the Registrar through their Minister for Foreign Affairs or their ambassador accredited to the Netherlands.
  • The judgment is final, binding on the parties to a case and without appeal (at the most it may be subject to interpretation or, upon the discovery of a new fact, revision).
  • By signing the Charter, a Member State of the United Nations undertakes to comply with the decision of the Court in any case to which it is a party.
  • ICJ discharges its duties as a full court but, at the request of the parties, it may also establish ad hoc chambers to examine specific cases.
  • Advisory proceedings before the Court are only open to five organs of the United Nations and 16 specialized agencies of the United Nations family or affiliated organizations.
  • Opinions provided by the court in advisory proceedings are essentially advisory and not binding.

Source: Aspire IAS Class notes


Students Achievement

Search By Date

Newsletter Subscription
SMS Alerts