The Advisory Opinion on Namibia<sup>*</sup>: Which UN Resolutions are Binding Under Article 25 of the Charter?

Rosalyn Higgins Dbe Qc

in Themes and Theories

Published in print August 2009 | ISBN: 9780198262350
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191682322 | DOI:
The Advisory Opinion on Namibia*: Which UN Resolutions are Binding Under Article 25 of the Charter?

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On July 29, 1970, the United Nations (UN) Security Council asked the International Court of Justice (ICJ) for an advisory opinion. It asked the following question: ‘What are the legal consequences for states of the continued presence of South Africa in Namibia, notwithstanding Security Council resolution 276 (1970)?’ On June 21, 1971, the ICJ handed down its opinion. It held, by 13 votes to 2, that, given that the continued presence of South Africa in Namibia was deemed illegal, South Africa was under an obligation to withdraw its administration from Namibia immediately and thus put an end to its occupation of the Territory. This chapter analyses the question: ‘Does Article 25 of the UN Charter apply only to decisions taken by the Security Council under Chapter VII?’ This question arises in the context of this case given as an example because the ICJ was required to direct its attention to the legal consequences flowing from a series of resolutions on Namibia in the General Assembly and in the Security Council.

Keywords: United Nations Security Council; International Court of Justice; South Africa; Namibia; Article 25; UN Charter; resolutions; General Assembly

Chapter.  8301 words. 

Subjects: Public International Law

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