Chapter

Remedies and the International Court of Justice: An Introduction

Rosalyn Higgins Dbe Qc

in Themes and Theories

Published in print August 2009 | ISBN: 9780198262350
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191682322 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198262350.003.0058
Remedies and the International Court of Justice: An Introduction

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This chapter examines the advantages and disadvantages of recourse to the International Court of Justice (ICJ) for those seeking a remedy for a violation of international law. Because the ICJ can only deal with disputes between states, litigation in which individuals or non-governmental organisations (NGOs) wish to invoke international law obligations as a cause of action cannot be brought to the ICJ. One immediately enters the theoretical minefield of whether rights under international law (other than human rights) are rights owed to the individual, or rather to his state. Under the Statute as it stands, NGOs may not directly participate in advisory opinions, any more than in litigation. One of the contributory elements to a less than speedy service by the ICJ is the fact that its jurisdiction is based on the consent of the parties. The various remedies which have been sought by states from the ICJ have included mere declarations of a breach, the designation of a boundary line, restitution, the award of damages, and performance.

Keywords: International Court of Justice; international law; remedies; disputes; litigation; non-governmental organisations; jurisdiction; consent; breach; restitution

Chapter.  4965 words. 

Subjects: Public International Law

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