Kenya rejects ICJ’s verdict on Somalia maritime border row | Latest News Table

Kenya rejects ICJ’s verdict on Somalia maritime border row

Kenya has rejected “in totality” the choice by the Worldwide Courtroom of Justice (ICJ) to favour Somalia in a years-long dispute over the 2 international locations’ maritime border, including that it’s “profoundly involved” over the choice and its implications on the area.

On Tuesday, the Hague-based United Nations’ highest court docket drew a brand new border near the one claimed by Somalia though Kenya saved part of the 100,000 square-kilometre (39,000 square-mile) space.

“The choice was clearly inaccurate,” learn an announcement by Kenya’s Presidency printed on Wednesday, including that the decision “embodies a perpetuation of the ICJ’s jurisdictional overreach and raises a basic query on the respect of the sovereignty and consent of States to worldwide judicial processes”.

The information was celebrated in Somalia the place Osman Dubbe, minister of data, tradition and tourism, congratulated the Somali folks for having “succeeded in capturing our seas”.

“This success didn’t come simply however by means of battle and sacrifice,” he added on Twitter.

The 14-judge panel of the worldwide court docket rejected an argument by Somalia that Kenya had violated its sovereignty by working in its territorial waters. It had additionally requested for compensation from Kenya on this matter.

The Hague additionally stated that there was no proof to backs Kenya’s declare that Somalia had beforehand agreed to its claimed border.

The court docket’s rulings are binding, although the court docket has no enforcement powers and international locations have been recognized to disregard its verdicts.

What was the dispute about?

The dispute between Somalia and Kenya stems from a disagreement over which course their border extends into the Indian Ocean.

Whereas Somalia says the boundary ought to run in the identical course because the southeasterly path of its land border, Kenya argues the border ought to take roughly a 45-degree flip on the shoreline and run in a latitudinal line.

Such a transfer will give Kenya entry to a bigger share of the maritime space.

Aside from fishing, the disputed space is considered wealthy in oil and fuel, with each international locations accusing one another of auctioning off blocks earlier than the ruling by the court docket.

Al Jazeera’s Malcolm Webb, reporting from the Kenyan capital Nairobi, stated “the court docket has already stated Kenya doesn’t have any authorized grounds to reject this judgement as a result of it signed as much as this court docket’s authority within the Nineteen Sixties and may’t retroactively renege on that”.

“The query now’s will Kenya settle for this ruling. If it doesn’t, it places Somalia in a stronger place to hunt help from the UN to hunt diplomatic help in imposing or obliging Kenya to uphold this ruling,” he stated.

What has occurred to date?

In 2014, Somalia requested the ICJ to rule on the case after out-of-court negotiations between the 2 international locations aimed toward settling the dispute broke down.

In February 2017, the court docket dominated it had the proper to adjudicate on the case as judges rejected Kenya’s declare {that a} 2009 settlement between the neighbours amounted to a dedication to settle the matter out of court docket, stripping the ICJ of jurisdiction.

In June 2019, the ICJ stated public hearings would happen between September 9 and September 14 that yr, earlier than pushing the beginning date to November 4 after granting a request by Kenya that stated it wanted time to recruit a brand new authorized staff.

The Kenyan aspect appealed the November dates, saying it wanted as much as a yr.

The ICJ then moved the hearings to June 2020, however Kenya then requested one other postponement, this time citing the pandemic.

The UN delayed the listening to until March 2021.

In January, Kenya wrote to the ICJ, requesting the listening to be delayed for a fourth time, claiming a map with essential info that was set to be offered as proof within the case has disappeared.

Somalia protested towards such a transfer, and the ICJ stated earlier this yr that the hearings would begin on March 15.

Kenya determined to boycott the listening to, citing “perceived bias and unwillingness” of the ICJ “to accommodate requests for the delaying the hearings” on account of the pandemic.

The Hague moved forward listening to Somalia’s case, whereas utilizing written proof supplied by Nairobi as an alternative.

Per week earlier than the ultimate verdict, Nairobi introduced that it withdrew its participation from the case, in addition to its recognition of the court docket’s obligatory jurisdiction.

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