Max-Planck-Institut für ausländisches öffentliches Recht und Völkerrecht Logo Max-Planck-Institut für ausländisches öffentliches Recht und Völkerrecht

Sie befinden sich hier: Publikationen Archiv World Court Digest

World Court Digest

III. The International Court of Justice
4.3. Interpretation of Decisions

¤ Request for an Examination of the Situation
in Accordance with Paragraph 63 of the
Court's Judgment of 20 December 1974 in the
Nuclear Tests (New Zealand v. France) Case,
I.C.J. Reports 1995, p. 288

[pp. 303-304] 52. Whereas, in expressly laying down, in paragraph 63 of its Judgment of 20 December 1974, that, in the circumstances set out therein, "the Applicant could request an examination of the situation in accordance with the provisions of the Statute", the Court cannot have intended to limit the Applicant's access to legal procedures such as the filing of a new application (Statute, Art. 40, para. 1), a request for interpretation (Statute, Art. 60) or a request for revision (Statute, Art. 61), which would have been open to it in any event;
53. Whereas by inserting the above-mentioned words in paragraph 63 of its Judgment, the Court did not exclude a special procedure, in the event that the circumstances defined in that paragraph were to arise, in other words, circumstances which "affected" the "basis" of the Judgment;
54. Whereas such a procedure appears to be indissociably linked, under that paragraph, to the existence of those circumstances; and whereas, if the circumstances in question do not arise, that special procedure is not available;

[pp. 320-321 D.O. Weeramantry] This procedure went beyond the provision for interpretation of a judgment contained in Article 60 of the Court's Statute and the provision for revision contained in Article 61. The Court no doubt considered that in the circumstances before it, it needed to go beyond either of those provisions. It was seeking to meet a need different from the need for interpretation or for revision of the Judgment. It was also opening the door to New Zealand in a manner which reached beyond the period of limitation attached to applications for revision.
The rationale of the Court's action was totally different from the rationale underlying revision, for revision involves an alteration or modification of the Judgment, whereas the Court's action was aimed at preserving the Judgment in its full integrity, in the event that some event had occurred which undermined the basis of the Judgment. Moreover, had revision been its intention, there was no necessity for the Court to make any special provision as the Statute would have operated automatically.
I therefore see no merit in the submission that an application under paragraph 63 is an application for revision under another guise. The two procedures are totally different in conception, nature and operation.