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World Court Digest

Summaries of the Decisions

Case Concerning the Aerial Incident of 3 July 1988

(Islamic Republic of Iran v. United States of America),

Order of 13 December 1989.

On 17 May 1989, the Islamic Republic of Iran filed in the registry of the Court an Application instituting proceedings against the United States of America in respect of a dispute concerning the interpretation and application of the 1944 Convention on International Civil Aviation and the 1971 Convention for the Suppression of Unlawful Acts against the Safety of Civil Aviation. The dispute arose from the destruction of an Iranian aircraft, and the killing of 290 passengers and crew, on 3 July 1988. The United States intended to find preliminary objections to jurisdiction and admissibility prior to the filing of a memorial by the Applicant. The Court stated that whereas, in accordance with Article 79, para. 1, of the Rules of Court, while a respondant which wishes to submit a preliminary objection is entitled before doing so to be informed as to the nature of the claim by the submission of a Memorial by the Applicant, it may nevertheless file its objection earlier. The Court unanimously fixed the following time-limits for the written proceedings: 12 June 1990 for the Memorial of the Islamic Republic of Iran: 10 December 1990 for the Counter-Memorial of the United States of America.