Declarations Recognizing the Jurisdiction of the Court as Compulsory
The States parties to the Statute of the Court may "at any time declare that they recognize as compulsory ipso facto and without special agreement, in relation to any other State accepting the same obligation, the jurisdiction of the Court" (Art 36, para. 2 of the Statute).
Each State which has recognized the compulsory jurisdiction of the Court has in principle the right to bring any one or more other State which has accepted the same obligation before the Court by filing an application instituting proceedings with the Court, and, conversely, it has undertaken to appear before the Court should proceedings be instituted against it by one or more such other States.
The Declarations Recognizing as Compulsory the Jurisdiction of the Court take the form of a unilateral act of the State concerned and are deposited with the Secretary-General of the United Nations.
The texts of declarations under Article 36, paragraph 2, of the Statute, which, based on the information provided by the depository, had not expired by effluxion of time, or whose withdrawal or replacement had not been notified by 25 July 2016 will be found below. The fact that a declaration is or is not included in this section, is without prejudice to its possible application by the Court in a particular case.
In view of the provisions of Article 36, paragraph 5, of the Statute of the International Court of Justice, the present section also contains the texts of declarations made under the Statute of the Permanent Court of International Justice which have not lapsed or been withdrawn. There are now six such declarations.
The declarations, deposited by a total of 72 States, are given here in English. Where this is not the original language of the declaration, the translations used, except where otherwise indicated, are by the Secretariat of the United Nations or of the League of Nations.
The following declaration have been filed with the Secretary-General of the United Nations (the date shown after the name of the State is that on which the declaration was deposited) :
10 May 1994
On behalf of the Government of Canada,
(1) I give notice that I hereby terminate the acceptance by Canada of the compulsory jurisdiction of the International Court of Justice hitherto effective by virtue of the declaration made on 10 September 1985 in conformity with paragraph 2 of Article 36 of the Statute of the Court.
(2) I declare that the Government of Canada accepts as compulsory ipso facto and without special convention, on condition of reciprocity, the jurisdiction of the International Court of Justice, in conformity with paragraph 2 of Article 36 of the Statute of the Court, until such time as notice may be given to terminate the acceptance, over all disputes arising after the present declaration with regard to situations or facts subsequent to this declaration, other than:
(a) disputes in regard to which the parties have agreed or shall agree to have recourse to some other method of peaceful settlement;
(b) disputes with the government of any other country which is a member of the Commonwealth, all of which disputes shall be settled in such manner as the parties have agreed or shall agree;
(c) disputes with regard to questions which by international law fall exclusively within the jurisdiction of Canada; and
(d) disputes arising out of or concerning conservation and management measures taken by Canada with respect to vessels fishing in the NAFO Regulatory Area, as defined in the Convention on Future Multilateral Co-operation in the Northwest Atlantic Fisheries, 1978, and the enforcement of such measures.
(3) The Government of Canada also reserves the right at any time, by means of a notification addressed to the Secretary-General of the United Nations, and with effect as from the moment of such notification, either to add to, amend or withdraw any of the foregoing reservations, or any that may hereafter be added.
It is requested that this notification be communicated to the governments of all the States that have accepted the Optional Clause and to the Registrar of the International Court of Justice.
New York, 10 May 1994.
(Signed) Louise FRECHETTE,
Back to the list