The Humanitarian Face of the International Court of Justice: Its Contribution to Interpreting and Developing International Human Rights and Humanitarian Law Rules and Principles

G. Zyberi

    Research output: ThesisDoctoral thesis 1 (Research UU / Graduation UU)

    Abstract

    In analyzing and describing the contribution and the role of an important international judicial body such as the International Court of Justice (ICJ, World Court, or simply the Court) in the interpretation and the development of international human rights and humanitarian law rules and principles one can employ different methodologies and adopt different perspectives. Scholars, practitioners, different organizations and institutions, and finally Judges of the Court itself, use their own methodology based on their concerns and the degree of involvement and knowledge of the Court. In spite of the extensive literature that has covered the activities of the ICJ over the six decades of its existence, there is to date hardly any systematic detailed study of the contribution and the role of the World Court in these two branches of international law in the form of a monograph or a dissertation. This book aims to fill this gap. Its readership would include primarily law students, scholars, and international law practitioners, but at the same time it can also assist human rights activists and laypersons who have a general interest in and a knowledge of international law thereby creating a better understanding of the role and contribution of the ICJ with regard to the interpretation and the development of the international law of human rights and humanitarian law rules and principles. With ‘interpretation’ is here understood the legal process through which the ICJ has clarified the aim, scope and application of specific international human rights and humanitarian law rules and principles. ‘Development’ stands not only for the Court’s contribution to the interpretation and application of existing rules of international law, but also for the innovations that the Court has introduced when dealing with different cases closely concerned with human rights and humanitarian law issues. A thorough analysis of this topic implies addressing three main areas which form the three pillars upon which this research is built. First, it is necessary to address the possibilities and limitations arising from the specific institutional characteristics of the ICJ. That provides the reader with the necessary overview of the potential of the Court with regard to its past and possible future contribution to the interpretation and development of human rights and humanitarian law. Second, the contribution of the Court is exposed through a detailed analysis of its case law dealing with international human rights and humanitarian law issues. The period covered stretches from the establishment of the Court in 1946 to 1 September 2007. Last, but not least, the third pillar of this research focuses on the relationship between the ICJ and specialised international human rights and humanitarian law courts and tribunals (ICTs) and international quasi-judicial bodies (IQJBs). Indeed, that is a necessary step before drawing conclusions and making recommendations aiming, firstly, at clarifying the position and the role of the ICJ in the area of human rights and humanitarian law and, secondly, at improving the existing international legal order concerned with the promotion and the protection of human rights.
    Original languageUndefined/Unknown
    QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
    Awarding Institution
    • Utrecht University
    Supervisors/Advisors
    • Flinterman, Cees, Primary supervisor
    • Gill, T.D., Supervisor
    Award date3 Apr 2008
    Place of PublicationUtrecht
    Publisher
    Print ISBNs978-90-5095-792-2
    Publication statusPublished - 3 Apr 2008

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