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1 August 2004-31 July 2005
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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”.
President of the International
Court of Justice.
The Hague, 5 August 2005.