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The International Court of Justice


1. Uruguay River pulp mill dispute:

The dispute arose between Argentina and Uruguay between 2003 and 2005, when two European companies built two pulp mills (chemical farms to produce paper) on the shores of the Uruguay River, which constitutes the natural border with Argentina. The environmental safeguard and conservation of this river was protected by a bilateral treaty between the two States. The unauthorized Uruguayan project led to the outburst of popular protest – the most effective of which were the blockades of the bridges to get to Uruguay and the boycotting of Uruguayan products, causing economic damages, by the Argentinean people living nearby (who alleged to fear increasing pollution, even though several scientific studies showed that the mills were not to harm the habitat of the river). Those claims were accepted and supported by the Argentinean government that – though they had always had peaceful relationships with their neighbours – officially complained about the pollution threat and, furthermore, about an alleged breach of the treaty that would have required an informative proceeding before any potentially-polluting farm could be installed on the river’s shores. When all bilateral negotiations and third-party mediation failed, Argentina sued Uruguay in front of the ICJ.

2. Violation of the International Convention for the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (CERD):

On 12th August 2008, the Republic of Georgia has filed an application at the International Court of Justice (ICJ) against the Russian Federation alleging violation of the International Convention for the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (CERD).

Georgia states in its application to the ICJ that the “Russian Federation, through its State organs, State agents, and other persons and entities exercising governmental authority, and through the South Ossetian and Abkhaz separatist forces and other agents acting on the instructions of, and under the direction and control of the Russian Federation, is responsible for serious violations of its fundamental obligations under [the] CERD, including Articles 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6”. According to Georgia, these violations occurred in the period from 1990 to August 2008.

Georgia claimed that Russia had used ethnic violence against Georgians in Abkhazia and South Ossetia. Russia’s military advances into the two regions resulted in a brief war in August 2008. Georgia claimed that Russia’s discrimination included torture, rape, murder, imprisonment, deportation and forcible transfer. Thousands of ethnic Georgians fled the regions during the conflict. Georgia accused Russia of preventing forcibly displaced ethnic Georgians from returning to South Ossetia.

At first, the ICJ decided it had jurisdiction under CERD to issue provisional matters to stop violence. But the ICJ finally found it did not have jurisdiction to adjudicate the claim.


chaired by
Ms. Rahma Halil
Mr. José Antonio Villena

Available Positions:

China, People’s Republic*
Republic of Korea
Russian Federation*
United Arab Emirates
United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland*
United States of America*

* For this positions, experience is preferred.