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        General Assembly
22 August 2005

Official Records
Sixtieth Session
Supplement No. 4 (A/60/4)

Report of the International Court of Justice

1 August 2004-31 July 2005


ISSN 0251-8473

Symbols of United Nations documents are composed of capital letters combined with figures. Mention of such a symbol indicates a reference to a United Nations document.


256. At the 49th Plenary Meeting of The Fifty-Ninth Session of the General Assembly, held on 4 November 2004, at which the Assembly took note of the Report of the Court for the period from 1 August 2003 to 31 July 2004, the President of the Court, Judge Shi Jiuyong, addressed the General Assembly on the role and functioning of the Court (A/59/PV.49).

257. In his address, the President stated himself “gratified” to note the “increased use of the Court by States over recent years”, adding that “in order to meet this growing demand and fulfil its judicial responsibilities, the Court [had] taken further steps in the review period to improve its judicial efficiency”. Over the past judicial year, the Court had “demonstrated its ability to deal with a varied and demanding case load” and “clearly shown that it can react urgently and efficiently to meet the needs of States . . . and to respond to requests from the General Assembly for an advisory opinion”.

A substantial workload


263. Finally, on 9 July 2004, in response to an urgent request by the General Assembly, the Court rendered its Advisory Opinion on the Legal Consequences of the Construction of a Wall in the Occupied Palestinian Territory , finding that: “The construction of the wall being built by Israel, the occupying Power, in the occupied Palestinian territory, including in and around Jerusalem, and its associated régime, are contrary to international law.” The Court also determined what the legal consequences of those breaches were: for Israel, for other States, and for the United Nations.


A clear need for additional funds

265. President Shi presented an overview of the 21 cases still pending before the Court, which illustrate the variety of international disputes that are customarily referred to it: territorial disputes between neighbouring States, classic disputes in which one State complains of the treatment of its nationals by another, and cases concerning the use of force, which often relate to events that have been brought before the General Assembly or the Security Council.

266. With reference to the budget allocated to the Court to handle this workload during the 2004-2005 biennium, the President felt himself bound to draw the Assembly’s attention to the fact that the budget had been agreed “in advance of the General Assembly’s urgent request for an advisory opinion on the Legal Consequences of the Construction of a Wall in the Occupied Palestinian Territory ”, a matter which had “attracted unprecedented world attention”, for which “meeting the demands of the media and providing adequate security [had] placed a great burden on the Court’s resources”. As a result, stated the President, “the Court [would] require additional funds to cover its expenses for the 2004-2005 biennium”, and he asked the Assembly to ensure that the Court would have “adequate financial support to perform its role in the year ahead”.


SHI Jiuyong,
President of the International
Court of Justice.

The Hague, 5 August 2005.


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