International Court of Justice – Elections – Candidacy of Ronny Abraham – Support of Jean-Yves Le Drian, Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs (8 November 2017)

The UN Security Council and General Assembly will vote on November 9 to renew five of the 15 judges of the International Court of Justice.

Our compatriot Ronny Abraham is standing for a new term of office. As Jean-Yves Le Drian underscored in August during Ambassadors’ Week, “at a time when the role of the International Court of Justice in resolving international disputes and setting out legal rules is expanding, the re-election of French judge Ronny Abraham is a top priority. The minister for Europe and foreign affairs met with him on October 30 during his visit to New York for the closing of the French presidency of the Security Council.

A government advisor and former director of legal affairs in the Foreign Ministry from 1998 to 2005, serving as legal advisor and representative of France at the International Court of Justice, the European Court of Human Rights, the Court of Justice of the European Communities and international arbitration tribunals, Ronny Abraham has regularly represented France in numerous international forums. His election by his peers as president of the International Court of Justice on February 6, 2015, confirmed his unanimous recognition.

The International Court of Justice, which was established by the UN Charter, is the UN’s main judicial body. Its mission, in accordance with international law, is to settle the disputes brought before it by states and to give advisory opinions on legal questions raised by the UN bodies and specialized institutions. Its mission is therefore central to the peaceful resolution of disputes, a principle enshrined in the UN Charter. Its decisions are binding on the states that bring disputes before it.

Since its first inaugural session on April 18, 1946, the International Court of Justice has issued 126 rulings on a wide variety of issues (land borders, maritime delimitations, territorial sovereignty, none-use of force, violations of international humanitarian law, non-interference in the internal affairs of states, diplomatic relations and economic rights). It has also issued 27 advisory opinions on particularly sensitive issues: compliance with international law of the unilateral declaration of independence made by Kosovo, legal consequences of the construction of a wall in the Palestinian Territories, the territorial status of Western Sahara and South West Africa (Namibia), legality of the threat or use of nuclear weapons, and the admission of states to the UN.

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