France must protect premises Equatorial Guinea says is housing diplomatic mission in Paris – UN court

The International Court of Justice (ICJ), the principal judicial organ of the United Nations, has delivered its Order on the case concerning Immunities and Criminal Proceedings (Equatorial Guinea v. France) and the request by Equatorial Guinea to indicate provisional measures.

The Order indicates that France shall take “all measures at its disposal” to make sure that the premises presented as housing the diplomatic mission of Equatorial Guinea at 42 avenue Foch in Paris satisfy the required treatment outlined in Article 22 of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations. The Court also unanimously rejected the request of France to remove the case from the General List.

The Court recalled that, on 13 June 2016, Equatorial Guinea instituted proceedings against France with regard to a dispute concerning the immunity from criminal jurisdiction of the Vice-President of the Republic of Equatorial Guinea, Teodoro Nguema Obiang Mangue, and the legal status of the building which “houses the Embassy of Equatorial Guinea,” located at 42 avenue Foch in Paris.

In September 2016, Equatorial Guinea submitted a Request for the indication of provisional measures, asking the Court, inter alia, to order that France suspend all the criminal proceedings brought against the Vice-President of Equatorial Guinea; that France ensure that the building located at 42 avenue Foch in Paris is treated as premises of Equatorial Guinea’s diplomatic mission in France and, in particular, assure its inviolability; and that France refrain from taking any other measure that might aggravate or extend the dispute submitted to the Court.

Established in 1945 under the UN Charter, the ICJ – widely referred to as the ‘World Court’ – settles legal disputes between States and gives advisory opinions on legal questions that have been referred to it by authorized UN organs or specialized agencies. ICJ Judgments are final and binding on the Parties involved in the legal disputes submitted to the Court.

Source: UN News Centre.

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