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World Court Digest

I. Substantive International Law - First Part
8.1. General Questions

¤ Case Concerning Armed Activities
on the Territory of the Congo
(New Application: 2002)
(Democratic Republic of the Congo v. Rwanda)
Request for the Indication of Provisional Measures
Order of 10 July 2002

[p. 249-250] 92. Whereas there is a fundamental distinction between the question of the acceptance by a State of the Court’s jurisdiction and the compatibility of particular acts with international law; the former requires consent; the latter question can only be reached when the Court deals with the merits after having established its jurisdiction and having heard full legal arguments by both parties;
93. Whereas, whether or not States accept the jurisdiction of the Court, they remain in any event responsible for acts attributable to them that violate international law; whereas in particular they are required to fulfil their obligations under the United Nations Charter; whereas the Court cannot but note in this respect that the Security Council has adopted a great number of resolutions concerning the situation in the region, in particular resolutions 1234 (1999), 1291 (2000), 1304 (2000), 1316 (2000), 1323 (2000), 1332 (2000), 1341 (2001), 1355 (2001), 1376 (2001), 1399 (2002) and 1417 (2002); whereas the Security Council has demanded on many occasions that “all the parties to the conflict put an ... end to violations of human rights and international humanitarian law”; and whereas it has inter alia reminded “all parties of their obligations with respect to the security of civilian populations under the Fourth Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War of 12 August 1949”, and added that “all forces present on the territory of the Democratic Republic of the Congo are responsible for preventing violations of international humanitarian law in the territory under their control”; whereas the Court wishes to stress the necessity for the Parties to these proceedings to use their influence to prevent the repeated grave violations of human rights and international humanitarian law which have been observed even recently;