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International Court of Justice - Press Communique 99/22 dated 28 May 1999

Legality of Use of Force
(Yugoslavia v. Belgium) (Yugoslavia v. Canada) (Yugoslavia v. France)
(Yugoslavia v. Germany) (Yugoslavia v. Italy) (Yugoslavia v. Netherlands)
(Yugoslavia v. Portugal) (Yugoslavia v. Spain) (Yugoslavia v. United Kingdom)
(Yugoslavia v. United States of America)

Provisional measures

Court to give its decisions on Wednesday 2 June 1999 at 10.00 a.m.

THE HAGUE, 28 May 1999. On Wednesday 2 June 1999, the International Court of Justice (ICJ), the principal judicial organ of the United Nations, will give its decisions on the requests for the indication of provisional measures submitted by the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (FRY) in the above-mentioned cases.

A public sitting will take place at 10.00 a.m. at the Peace Palace in The Hague during which the Vice-President of the Court, Judge Christopher Weeramantry, exercising the functions of the presidency in the ten cases, will announce the Court's decision in each case.

Background information

In its request for the indication of provisional measures, Yugoslavia asked the Court to order the States involved to "cease immediately [their] acts of use of force" and to "refrain from any act of threat or use of force" against the FRY.

At the opening of the hearings, on Monday 10 May 1999, five judges ad hoc took the oath (Article 31 of the Court's Statute provides that parties which do not have any judge of their nationality on the Bench may appoint a judge ad hoc). They are Messrs. Milenko Kreca (Yugoslavia), Patrick Duinslaeger (Belgium), Marc Lalonde (Canada), Giorgio Gaja (Italy) and Santiago Torres Bernárdez (Spain).

The Court then heard the Parties. Yugoslavia, as the applicant State, spoke first for two hours in a common statement for all ten cases. It was followed by the respondent States in English alphabetical order. Each State had one hour to submit its arguments. The first round of oral arguments was concluded on Tuesday 11 May 1999. A second round of oral arguments was held on Wednesday 12 May 1999, Yugoslavia having one hour at its disposal and the respondent States 15 minutes each.

Yugoslavia filed its requests for the indication of provisional measures on 29 April 1999 when it instituted proceedings before the Court against the ten above-mentioned States, accusing them of bombing Yugoslav territory in violation of their obligation not to use force against another State (for further details, see Press Communiqué 99/17).

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