International Court of Justice

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Nationality as we know it? – A note on the genuine link

The Nottebohm judgement is probably one if not the best-known case of the ICJ. Ever since its release in 1955 the tune of a genuine link has been reverberating in international law. However, just like so many other one-hit wonders the genuine link has been belittled and failed to genuinely make inroads into doctrinal circles. The general assessment veers somewhere between unhelpful, misguided and retired for good. The hymn of sovereignty: Nationality is what any State makes of it And truth be told, looking at the doctrinal understanding of nationality and the recent State practice of handing out nationality al gusto the argument that some form of a substantive relationship needs to exist before any individual can be deemed a national, is hard to gulp. The monetarization of nationality, the freewheeling passportization in the name of nationalistic politics and last but not least the instrumentalization of nationality to overcome the wrongs of a century old past are all but out of sync with the tune of…

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Defences and indispensable incidental issues: the limits of subject-matter jurisdiction in view of the recent ICJ ICAO Council judgments

On 14 July 2020, the ICJ issued its judgments on the cases of the Appeal Relating to the Jurisdiction of the ICAO Council under Article 84 of the Convention on International Civil Aviation (Bahrain, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and United Arab Emirates v. Qatar) and Appeal Relating to the Jurisdiction of the ICAO Council under Article II,…

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The ICJ and nuclear disarmament: towards a universal obligation?

Today is the anniversary of the ICJ’s Nuclear Weapons Advisory Opinion. We would like to revisit, and invite readers to reflect on, one particular conclusion (not discussed in previous posts on the Marshall Islands cases here, here, here), contained in operative paragraph 2 F (§ 105) of the Opinion: “(t)here exists an obligation to…

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The Monetary Gold Doctrine and the ICC: Can the ICC determine the Territorial Boundaries of Israel and Palestine?

The Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC) has been engaged in a Preliminary Examination of the situation in Palestine since January 2015. By December 2019, the Prosecutor had come to the conclusion that there is a reasonable basis to believe that war crimes have been, or are being, committed on territory of Palestine, and that the other…

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A Reference to the ICJ for an Advisory Opinion over COVID-19 Pandemic

Much has been said about the ICJ’s contentious jurisdiction in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, stressing in this respect the problem of the State’s acceptance of jurisdiction and establishing the existence of a dispute (see e.g. here, here, here , here and listen). However, while the focus has been on the Court’s…

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