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30th plenary meeting
Thursday, 29 October 2009, 3 p.m.
The meeting was called to order at 3.20 p.m.
Agenda item 72
Report of the International Court of Justice
Report of the International Court of Justice (A/64/4)
Report of the Secretary-General (A/64/308)
The President ( spoke in Arabic ): May I take it that the General Assembly takes note of the report of the International Court of Justice for the period 1 August 2008 to 31 July 2009?
It was so decided.
Mr. Tladi (South Africa): ...
As we encourage recourse to advisory opinions, it is appropriate to remind delegations that, while advisory opinions of the International Court of Justice are not binding in and of themselves in the sense of Article 94 of the Charter of the United Nations, they are not without legal consequence, and that failure to comply with such a decision would be considered a violation of whatever rule the Court may have been deemed to be at issue in that case. We are thus particularly concerned that the recent advisory opinion on the legal consequences of the construction of a wall in the occupied Palestinian territory continues to be disregarded.
Ms. Negm (Egypt) (spoke in Arabic ): ...
Since its establishment, the Court has strengthened important international legal principles and rules through its advisory opinions on the legality of the threat or use of nuclear weapons, the legal consequences of the construction of the separation wall in the occupied Palestinian territory, and other decisions and rulings on territorial and maritime border disputes. Those advisory opinions have contributed to the settlement of several disputes around the world and to the prevention of their escalation into armed conflicts.
Mr. Mohamad (Sudan) (spoke in Arabic ): ...
In this respect, we recall the legal opinions issued by the Court, in particular the opinion on the illegal construction of the separation wall in the Palestinian territory, whose non-implementation constitutes a challenge to the will of the international community and to international justice. The ICJ should protect the established rules of international law and agreements.
Mr. Ben Lagha (Tunisia) (spoke in Arabic ): ...
My delegation thinks that the Court’s advisory opinions are not just a point of view but a reaffirmation of the principles of international law and therefore should not remain dead letters: they must be taken into consideration by all Member States as well as by the principal organs of the United Nations, in particular the General Assembly and the Security Council. In this context, we would like to recall the recent advisory opinion relating to the construction of the separation wall in the occupied Palestinian territory. That advisory opinion upheld and strengthened the principle of the inadmissibility of the acquisition of land by force, and we reiterate our call for it to be taken into account by the principal organ of the United Nations responsible for the maintenance of international peace and security.
The meeting rose at 6.10 p.m.
This record contains the text of speeches delivered in English and of the interpretation of speeches delivered in the other languages. Corrections should be submitted to the original languages only. They should be incorporated in a copy of the record and sent under the signature of a member of the delegation concerned to the Chief of the Verbatim Reporting Service, room U-506. Corrections will be issued after the end of the session in a consolidated corrigendum.