Thursday, March 12, 2009

ICJ to Hold Hearing on Request for Provisional Measures (Belgium v. Senegal)

Senegal Belgium The International Court of Justice will hold three days of public hearings on the request for the indication of provisional measures in the proceedings that the Kingdom of Belgium brought against the Republic of Senegal.  The public hearings will be held from 6 to 8 April 2009 at the Peace Palace in The Hague.

On February 19, Belgium instituted proceedings against Senegal at the ICJ alleging that Senegal breached its obligation to prosecute the former President of Chad, Hissene Habre, or to extradite him to Begium for criminal proceedings on allegations of torture and crimes against humanity.  Belgium also requested the indication of provisional measures.  Habre has been living in exile in Chad since 1990.  Belgium claims that Senegal's duty to prosecute or extradite arises under both the Convention Against Torture (CAT) Icj and customary international law.  Belgium asserts jurisdiction on the basis of the parties' respective declarations accepting the Court's compulsory jurisdiction under Article 36 of the Statute of the Court and the dispute resolution clause of CAT.  With respect to provisional measures, Belgium requests the Court order Senegal to take appropriate measures to keep Habre under its control and surveillance until the international legal issues are resolved.

(mew and cgb)

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