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World Court Digest

III. The International Court of Justice
3.4. The Submissions / Scope of the Dispute

¤ Maritime Delimitation in the Area
between Greenland and Jan Mayen,
Judgment, I.C.J. Reports 1993, p. 38

[pp. 77-78] 88. In its Counter-Memorial, Norway argued that

"the adjudication should result in a judgment which is declaratory as to the bases of delimitation, and which leaves the precise articulation (or demarcation) of the alignment to negotiation between the Parties",

and its submissions were, and have remained, limited to a request for what it terms a "declaratory" judgment in favour of the median line. Since the Court does not consider that the median line constitutes the boundaries which result from the application of the relevant law, it is unable to uphold those submissions. The Court is also unable to uphold the submission of Denmark that a delimitation line should be drawn 200 miles from the baselines of eastern Greenland, according to specific co-ordinates supplied by Denmark. At the hearings however Denmark presented an additional and alternative submission (paragraph 10 above) whereby the Court is asked

"to decide, in accordance with international law and in light of the facts and arguments developed by the Parties, where the line of delimitation shall be drawn between Denmark's and Norway's fisheries zones and continental shelf areas in the waters between Greenland and Jan Mayen, and to draw that line" (emphasis added).

At the final hearing it was stated on behalf of Norway, in relation to the final Danish submissions, that Norway maintained the position expressed in its Counter-Memorial, and quoted above.

89. To give only a broad indication of the manner in which the definition of the delimitation line should be fixed, and to leave the matter for the further agreement of the Parties, as urged by Norway, would in the Court's view not be a complete discharge of its duty to determine the dispute. The Court is satisfied that it should define the delimitation line in such a way that any questions which might still remain would be matters strictly relating to hydrographic technicalities which the Parties, with the help of their experts, can certainly resolve.