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 28 September 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of declarations made under the Statute of the Permanent Court of International Justice which have not lapsed or been withdrawn.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) :
29 October 1990
[Translation from the Spanish]
1. On behalf of the Spanish Government, I have the honour to declare that the Kingdom of Spain accepts as compulsory ipso facto and without special agreement, the jurisdiction of the International Court of Justice, in conformity with Article 36, paragraph 2, of the Statute of the Court, in relation to any other State accepting the same obligation, on condition of reciprocity, in legal disputes not included among the following situations and exceptions:
(a) Disputes in regard to which the Kingdom of Spain and the other party or parties have agreed or shall agree to have recourse to some other method of peaceful settlement of the dispute;
(b) Disputes in regard to which the other party or parties have accepted the compulsory jurisdiction of the Court only in relation to or for the purposes of the dispute in question;
(c) Disputes in regard to which the other party or parties have accepted the compulsory jurisdiction of the Court less than 12 months prior to the filing of the application bringing the dispute before the Court;
(d) Disputes arising prior to the date on which this Declaration was deposited with the Secretary-General of the United Nations or relating to events or situations which occurred prior to that date, even if such events or situations may continue to occur or to have effects thereafter.
2. The Kingdom of Spain may at any time, by means of a notification addressed to the Secretary-General of the United Nations, add to, amend or withdraw, in whole or in part, the foregoing reservations or any that may hereafter be added. These amendments shall become effective on the date of their receipt by the Secretary-General of the United Nations.
3. The present Declaration, which is deposited with the Secretary General of the United Nations in conformity with Article 36, paragraph 4, of the Statute of the International Court of Justice, shall remain in force until such time as it has been withdrawn by the Spanish Government or superseded by another declaration by the latter.
The withdrawal of the Declaration shall become effective after a period of six months has elapsed from the date of receipt by the Secretary-General of the United Nations of the relevant notification by the Spanish Government. However, in respect of States which have established a period of less than six months between notification of the withdrawal of their Declaration and its becoming effective, the withdrawal of the Spanish Declaration shall become effective after such shorter period has elapsed.
Madrid, 15 October 1990.
(Signed) Francisco FERNANDEZ ORDONEZ,
Minister for Foreign Affairs.
Back to the list