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Permanent Court of International Justice

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Français

Legal Consequences for States of the Continued Presence of South Africa in Namibia (South West Africa) notwithstanding Security Council Resolution 276 (1970)

Overview of the case

On 27 October 1966, the General Assembly decided that the Mandate for South West Africa (see Nos. 2.5-2.7 above and Contentious cases, Nos. 1.35-1.36) was terminated and that South Africa had no other right to administer the Territory. In 1969 the Security Council called upon South Africa to withdraw its administration from the Territory, and on 30 January 1970 it declared that the continued presence of the South African authorities in Namibia was illegal and that all acts taken by the South African Government on behalf of or concerning Namibia after the termination of the Mandate were illegal and invalid ; it further called upon all States to refrain from any dealings with the South African Government that were incompatible with that declaration. On 29 July 1970, the Security Council decided to request of the Court an advisory opinion on the legal consequences for States of the continued presence of South Africa in Namibia. In its Advisory Opinion of 21 June 1971, the Court found that the continued presence of South Africa in Namibia was illegal and that South Africa was under an obligation to withdraw its administration immediately. It found that States Members of the United Nations were under an obligation to recognize the illegality of South Africa’s presence in Namibia and the invalidity of its acts on behalf of or concerning Namibia, and to refrain from any acts implying recognition of the legality of, or lending support or assistance to, such presence and administration. Finally, it stated that it was incumbent upon States which were not Members of the United Nations to give assistance in the action which had been taken by the United Nations with regard to Namibia.


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

Request for Advisory Opinion

Request for Advisory Opinion (including the dossier of documents transmitted to the Court pursuant to article 65, paragraph 2 of the Statute)

5 August 1970
Request for Advisory Opinion (including the dossier of documents transmitted to the Court pursuant to article 65, paragraph 2 of the Statute)
Available in:
English French

Written proceedings

Written Statement (South Africa)

13 November 1970
Available in:
English

Oral proceedings

Verbatim record 1971

Minutes of the Public Sittings held at the Peace Palace, The Hague, on 27 January, from 8 February to 17 March, and on 21 June 1971, the President, Sir Muhammad Zafrulla Khan, presiding
Available in:
Original Language

Orders

Order of 5 August 1970

Fixing of time-limits: Written Statements
Available in:
English French Bilingual

Order of 28 August 1970

Extension of time-limit: Written Statements
Available in:
English French Bilingual

Order of 26 January 1971

Order no.1: Composition of the Court
Available in:
English French Bilingual

Order of 26 January 1971

Order no.2: Composition of the Court
Available in:
English French Bilingual

Order of 26 January 1971

Order no.3: Composition of the Court
Available in:
English French Bilingual

Order of 29 January 1971

Judge ad hoc (including the text of the declarations of Judges Sir Gerald Fitzmaurice, Gros and Petren, Onyeama and Dillard)
Available in:
English French Bilingual

Advisory opinions

Summaries of Advisory Opinions and Orders

Summary 1971/1

Summary of the Advisory Opinion of 21 June 1971
Available in:
English French

Press releases

Press release 1970/7

6 August 1970
Legal Consequences for States of the Continued Presence of South Africa in Namibia (South West Africa) notwithstanding Security Council Resolution 276 (1970) - The President of the Court made an Order fixing the time-limits for the filing of the written statements of the Member States
Available in:
English French

Press release 1970/8

28 August 1970
Legal Consequences for States of the Continued Presence of South Africa in Namibia (South West Africa) notwithstanding Security Council Resolution 276 (1970) - Partial Acceptance of South African Request for Extension of Time-limit
Available in:
English French

Press release 1970/10
(French version only)

23 November 1970
Conséquences juridiques pour les Etats de la présence continue de l'Afrique du Sud en Namibie (Sud-Ouest africain) nonobstant la résolution du Conseil de sécurité 276 (1970) - Présentation d'exposés écrits par les Parties (French version only)
Available in:
French

Press release 1971/1

21 January 1971
Legal Consequences for States of the Continued Presence of South Africa in Namibia (South West Africa) notwithstanding Security Council Resolution 276 (1970) - The Court will hold a closed meeting on 27 January 1971
Available in:
English French

Press release 1971/2

26 January 1971
Legal Consequences for States of the Continued Presence of South Africa in Namibia (South West Africa) notwithstanding Security Council Resolution 276 (1970) - The Court made three Orders deciding not to accede to the objections raised by the Government of South Africa
Available in:
English French

Press release 1971/3

30 January 1971
Legal Consequences for States of the Continued Presence of South Africa in Namibia (South West Africa) notwithstanding Security Council Resolution 276 (1970) - The Court makes an Order rejecting the application of the South African Government for leave to choose a Judge ad hoc
Available in:
English French

Press release 1971/4

5 February 1971
Legal Consequences for States of the Continued Presence of South Africa in Namibia (South West Africa) notwithstanding Security Council Resolution 276 (1970) - Opening of public hearings
Available in:
English French

Press release 1971/5

8 February 1971
Legal Consequences for States of the Continued Presence of South Africa in Namibia (South West Africa) notwithstanding Security Council Resolution 276 (1970) - First public hearings
Available in:
English French

Press release 1971/6
(French version only)

17 March 1971
Legal Consequences for States of the Continued Presence of South Africa in Namibia (South West Africa) notwithstanding Security Council Resolution 276 (1970) - President makes statement at the end of the twenty-third public sitting
Available in:
French

Press release 1971/7

14 May 1971
Legal Consequences for States of the Continued Presence of South Africa in Namibia (South West Africa) notwithstanding Security Council Resolution 276 (1970) - The Court rejects two requests by the Government of South Africa
Available in:
English French

Press release 1971/8

11 June 1971
Legal Consequences for States of the Continued Presence of South Africa in Namibia (South West Africa) notwithstanding Security Council Resolution 276 (1970) - The Court will deliver its Advisory Opinion on 21 June 1971
Available in:
English French

Press release 1971/10

21 June 1971
Legal Consequences for States of the Continued Presence of South Africa in Namibia (South West Africa) notwithstanding Security Council Resolution 276 (1970) - Submission of Written Statements by States
Available in:
English French

Correspondence

Correspondence

29 July 1970
Correspondence
Available in:
English French