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Français

Obligations concerning Negotiations relating to Cessation of the Nuclear Arms Race and to Nuclear Disarmament (Marshall Islands v. India)

Overview of the case

On 24 April 2014, the Marshall Islands filed a number of Applications, including one against India. It accuses the latter of not fulfilling its obligations relating to the cessation of the nuclear arms race at an early date and to nuclear disarmament.

While India is not a party to the Treaty on Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT), the Marshall Islands — which has ratified it — argues that certain obligations laid down in the Treaty apply to all States as a matter of customary international law. It contends in particular that this applies to Article VI, whereby the parties “[undertake] to pursue negotiations in good faith on effective measures relating to cessation of the nuclear arms race at an early date and to nuclear disarmament, and on a treaty on general and complete disarmament under strict and effective international control”.

India having indicated, however, that it considers that the Court does not have jurisdiction in the alleged dispute, the Court, in an Order of 16 June 2014, found that it was necessary to resolve that question first of all, which should accordingly be separately determined before any proceedings on the merits.

After holding hearing from 7 to 16 March 2016, the Court delivered its Judgment on the objections raised by India to the jurisdiction of the Court and the admissibility of the Application on 5 October 2016, finding that India’s objection to jurisdiction based on the absence of a dispute between the Parties must be upheld. It further concluded that, lacking jurisdiction under Article 36, paragraph 2, of its Statute, it cannot proceed to the merits of the case. Given this conclusion, the Court found no need to consider the other objections raised by India.


This overview is provided for information only and in no way involves the responsibility of the Court.

Institution of proceedings

Written proceedings

Memorial of the Marshall Islands

16 December 2014
Procedure(s): Questions of jurisdiction and/or admissibility
Available in:
English French

Counter-Memorial of India

16 September 2015
Procedure(s): Questions of jurisdiction and/or admissibility
Available in:
English French

Oral proceedings

Verbatim record 2016/1

Public sitting held on Monday 7 March 2016, at 10 a.m., at the Peace Palace, President Abraham presiding, in the case regarding Obligations concerning Negotiations relating to Cessation of the Nuclear Arms Race and to Nuclear Disarmament (Marshall Islands v. India) - Jurisdiction
Procedure(s): Questions of jurisdiction and/or admissibility
Available in:
Original Language
Translation
(bilingual version) Translation

Verbatim record 2016/4

Public sitting held on Thursday 10 March 2016, at 10 a.m., at the Peace Palace, President Abraham presiding, in the case regarding Obligations concerning Negotiations relating to Cessation of the Nuclear Arms Race and to Nuclear Disarmament (Marshall Islands v. India)
Procedure(s): Questions of jurisdiction and/or admissibility
Available in:
Original Language
Translation
(bilingual version) Translation

Verbatim record 2016/6

Public sitting held on Monday 14 March 2016, at 10 a.m., at the Peace Palace, President Abraham presiding, in the case regarding Obligations concerning Negotiations relating to Cessation of the Nuclear Arms Race and to Nuclear Disarmament (Marshall Islands v. India)
Procedure(s): Questions of jurisdiction and/or admissibility
Available in:
Original Language
Translation
(bilingual version) Translation

Verbatim record 2016/8

Public sitting held on Wednesday 16 March 2016, at 10 a.m., at the Peace Palace, President Abraham presiding, in the case regarding Obligations concerning Negotiations relating to Cessation of the Nuclear Arms Race and to Nuclear Disarmament (Marshall Islands v. India)
Procedure(s): Questions of jurisdiction and/or admissibility
Available in:
Original Language
Translation
(bilingual version) Translation

Other documents

Orders

Order of 16 June 2014

Fixing of time-limits: Memorial and Counter-Memorial
Available in:
English French Bilingual

Order of 19 May 2015

Extension of a time-limit: Counter-Memorial
Available in:
English French Bilingual

Judgments

Summaries of Judgments and Orders

Summary 2016/3

Summary of the Judgment of 5 October 2016
Available in:
English French

Press releases

Press release 2014/22

19 June 2014
Obligations concerning Negotiations relating to Cessation of the Nuclear Arms Race and to Nuclear Disarmament (Marshall Islands v. India) - Fixing of time-limits for filing of pleadings on the question of jurisdiction
Available in:
English French

Press release 2015/14

2 June 2015
Obligations concerning Negotiations relating to Cessation of the Nuclear Arms Race and to Nuclear Disarmament (Marshall Islands v. India) - Extension of the time−limit for the filing of India's Counter−Memorial
Available in:
English French

Press release 2016/1

29 January 2016
Obligations concerning Negotiations relating to Cessation of the Nuclear Arms Race and to Nuclear Disarmament (Marshall Islands v. India) - Jurisdiction - The Court to hold public hearings from Monday 7 March to Wednesday 16 March 2016
Available in:
English French

Press release 2016/6

16 March 2016
Obligations concerning Negotiations relating to Cessation of the Nuclear Arms Race and to Nuclear Disarmament (Marshall Islands v. India) - Conclusion of public hearings on the question of jurisdiction
Available in:
English French

Press release 2016/29

5 October 2016
Obligations concerning Negotiations relating to Cessation of the Nuclear Arms Race and to Nuclear Disarmament (Marshall Islands v. India) - The Court upholds the objection to jurisdiction raised by India, based on the absence of a dispute between the Parties, and finds that it cannot proceed to the merits of the case
Available in:
English French