Last updated on: 5/21/2008 12:00:00 PM PST

What Was the Advisory Opinion of the International Court of Justice (ICJ), and Was It a Just Verdict?



General Reference (not clearly pro or con)
The International Court of Justice (ICJ), in its final paragraph (162) of the July 9, 2004 Advisory Opinion regarding the Israeli wall/fence concluded:

"The Court has reached the conclusion that the construction of the wall by Israel in the Occupied Palestinian Territory is contrary to international law and has stated the legal consequences that are to be drawn from that illegality."

July 9, 2004 - International Court of Justice (ICJ) 



PRO (yes)

Yasser Arafat, former President of the Palestinian Authority (PA) and Chairman of the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO), as quoted in a July 9, 2004 BBC News article titled "UN Rules Against Israeli Barrier":

"We salute this decision condemning the racist wall."

July 9, 2004 - Yasser Arafat 



Nabil Elaraby, JSP, International Court Justice, in his July 9, 2004 "separate opinion" on the ICJ's ruling, wrote the following:

"I would like to express, at the outset, my complete and unqualified support for the findings and conclusions of the Court."

July 9, 2004 - Nabil Elaraby, JSD 



Awn Shawkat Al-Khasawneh, LLM, International Court Justice, in his July 9, 2004 "separate opinion" on the ICJ's ruling, wrote the following:

"I concur with the Court’s findings and agree in general with its reasoning."

July 9, 2004 - Awn Shawkat Al-Khasawneh, LLM 



Abdul G. Koroma, LLM, International Court Justice, in his July 9, 2004 "separate opinion" on the ICJ's ruling, wrote the following:

"The Court’s findings are based on the authoritative rules of international law... The Court’s response provides an authoritative answer to the question submitted to it... In making these findings, the Court has performed its role as the supreme arbiter of international legality and safeguard against illegal acts."

July 9, 2004 - Abdul G. Koroma, LLM 



Hisashi Owada, LLB, International Court Justice, in his July 9, 2004 "separate opinion" on the ICJ's ruling, wrote the following:

"I concur with the conclusions of the Opinion of the Court both on the preliminary issues (jurisdiction and judicial propriety) and on most of the points belonging to the merits of the substantive issues involved."

July 9, 2004 - Hisashi Owada, LLB 



CON (no)

Thomas Buergenthal, PhD, International Court Justice, in his July 9, 2004 "separate opinion" of the ICJ's ruling, wrote the following:

"Since I believe that the Court should have exercised its discretion and declined to render the requested advisory opinion, I dissent from its decision to hear the case...I am compelled to vote against the Court’s findings on the merits because the Court did not have before it the requisite factual bases for its sweeping findings; it should therefore have declined to hear the case..."

July 9, 2004 - Thomas Buergenthal, PhD 



Arial Sharon, former Israeli Prime Minister, as quoted in a July 11, 2004 Aljazeera article titled "Annan: Israel must accept ICJ ruling":

"I want to make clear, the state of Israel absolutely rejects the ruling of the International Court of Justice in The Hague, It is a one-sided and politically motivated ruling."

July 11, 2004 - Ariel Sharon 



Alan Dershowitz, LLB, Harvard Law Professor, in a 2004 Jewish Telegraph commentary titled "Israel Should Ignore 'Bigoted Rulings,'" wrote:

"Virtually every democracy voted against that court taking jurisdiction over the fence case, while nearly every country that voted to take jurisdiction was a tyranny.

Israel owes the International Court absolutely no deference. It is under neither a moral nor a legal obligation to give any weight to its predetermined decision."

2004 - Alan M. Dershowitz, LLB 



Charles Krauthammer, MA, MD, Syndicated Columnist with the Washington Post Writers Group, in a July 16, 2004 editorial titled "The ICJ vs. Israel," wrote the following:

"The ICJ had no jurisdiction to take this case. It is a court of arbitration, which requires the consent of both parties. The Israelis, knowing the deck was stacked, refused to give it. Not only did the United States declare this issue outside the boundaries of this court, so did the European Union and Russia, hardly Zionist agents."

July 16, 2004 - Charles Krauthammer, MA, MD