Home News in English Somalia beats Kenya in the Hague Court on maritime borders

Somalia beats Kenya in the Hague Court on maritime borders


Somalia beats Kenya in the Hague Court on maritime borders

At 15.00 today the International Court of Justice based in The Hague – the United Nations justice body – issued the verdict for the solution of the dispute promoted since 2014 by Somalia against Kenya for the determination of their border maritime, largely agreeing with Somalia.

The United Nations International Court of Justice made up of 15 members

The issue arose several years ago and originated from the 1927 treaty between Italy and the United Kingdom, which had signed the border between the two countries on the mainland: a

The contested area between Somalia and Kenya
In support of its theses, Kenya claimed to have reached an agreement with Somalia for some time and by virtue of this conviction it had previously sold, in the disputed area, numerous concessions for oil exploration to the world giants of the sector, finally arousing the judicial reaction. of Somalia. During the dispute, all the oil giants – except ENI – abandoned the concessions obtained by Kenya, cautiously awaiting the outcome of the lawsuit.

Ing. Mohamed Omar Salihi

Beside him, since the origin of the dispute, was the Somali lawyer Mona Al-Sharmani, who established herself in an important law firm in New York after having worked, since the early 90s, as a legal officer in the Mission permanent residence of Somalia at the United Nations dealing with issues of international law.

The President of the Court, Judge Joan E. Donoghue, read the verdict that assigns to Somalia a large part of the sea area claimed by establishing that, contrary to what Kenya said, there was

Mona Al-Sharmani lawyer

In particular, the President said that: <span;>“The court unanimously notes that there is no maritime border agreed between the federal government of Somalia and the Republic of Kenya that follows that parallel of latitude. Kenya has not consistently supported his claim. according to which the maritime border with Somalia is defined by the line of latitude between the two parts<span;> “.

Indeed, Kenya had argued that a 1979 decree from its

The maritime border between Somalia and Kenya according to the verdict of the International Court of Justice

In its verdict today, the court ruled that Somalia’s inaction during 30 years of civil war cannot be interpreted as a

acceptance of the Kenyan border claims and also rejected the claims by which Kenya pleaded an adjustment of the equidistant line for security reasons, saying she was not at all convinced that the new border would have catastrophic effects on the livelihood and economic well-being of Kenyan fishermen. <span;>“17 of the 19 fish landing sites are located in the Lamu archipelago and therefore would not be affected by the equidistant line,”<span;> said President Joan E. Donoghue reading the verdict.

However, the court rejected Somalia’s claims for compensation, stating that Kenya’s conduct, with respect to the disputed area, did not violate international law prior to the verdict.

Finally, the court asked that both Somalia and Kenya accept the ruling and mutual sovereignty.

The Kenyan Foreign Ministry, already three days ago and foreseeing the negative result, had declared that it would no longer recognize the jurisdiction of the International Court, stating that <span;>“The delivery of the sentence will be the culmination of a flawed judicial process with which Kenya has had reservations. and he withdrew not only because of his obvious and inherent bias, but also because of his inadequacy to resolve the ongoing controversy. “

The International Court of Justice was established with art. 7 of the United Nations Charter and is governed by the Statute adopted in San Francisco in 1945 with a content that largely follows that of the Permanent Court of International Justice adopted in 1920 within the then current League of Nations.

The International Court of Justice fulfills two fundamental functions: an advisory one, on legal issues raised by the United Nations General Assembly, the United Nations Security Council or the United Nations specialized institutes when they are authorized to do so, and a judicial , which allows it to settle, acting as an arbitration body, disputes between member states of the United Nations that have recognized its jurisdiction.

Kenya has joined the jurisdiction of the International Court of Justice since December 16, 1963 and the last declaration of recognition of its jurisdiction, mandatory pursuant to art. 36 of the Statute of the Court.

Based on art. 94 of the United Nations Charter:

1. Each Member of the United Nations undertakes to comply with the decision of the International Court of Justice in any dispute to which it is a party.

2. If one of the parties to a dispute fails to fulfill its obligations as a result of a judgment rendered by the court, the other party may have recourse to the Security Council, which has the right, if it deems it necessary, to make recommendations or decide on the measures to be taken for the sentence to be enforced.
If Kenya continues to refuse to comply with the ruling of the International Court of Justice, Somalia will then have to turn to the UN Security Council to enforce the victorious verdict.

former president Daniel Arap Moi was proof that it had always maintained its border along a line perpendicular to the coast and had always treated the disputed maritime area as its own Economic Zone. Exclusive (EEZ), over which he had exercised the sovereign rights of exploitation of natural resources, also exercising jurisdiction over the installation and use of artificial and fixed structures.

The Court instead held that the MOU of April 7, 2009, reached between Somalia and Kenya in order to establish the diplomatic path for an attempt at an amicable settlement of the dispute and the subsequent implementation meetings of that MOU, demonstrated the opposite of what Kenya and he also recalled how, another proof in this sense, were the previous contacts between the parties, dating back to the 1980s, for an agreed solution to the crisis, albeit which ended unsuccessfully.

never a formal agreement with Somalia on the maritime borders and noting how the behaviors held by Kenya over time were not consistent with its defensive line.
The first to collect the documentation supporting the Somali reasons was Eng. Mohamed Omar Salihi who had also personally defended them in the hearing last March, but unfortunately passed away at the age of 69 on 1 September without having had the satisfaction of seeing largely his theses accepted. His personality was remembered today on Somali sites that are celebrating the victory.

border that descended obliquely, from the internal plateaus, in a south-easterly direction to to the shores of the Indian Ocean. On the assumption of international law according to which the maritime borders constitute the extension of the land borders, Somalia invoked the portion of sea facing the Kenyan coasts up to the limit of 200 nautical miles from the coast, whereas Kenya stated that the border must instead run along a line perpendicular to the coast following the directrix of the parallel. At issue was, therefore, a triangle of sea of ​​about 100,000 square kilometers, rich in gas and hydrocarbon deposits


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