The ICJ accepts requests for an advisory opinion from a limited number of entities specifically authorised to do so under the Charter of the United Nations. This includes the UN General Assembly (UNGA). The request takes the legal form of a UNGA resolution, adopted by a simple majority of UN member states present and voting.
The ICJ Resolution was adopted by unanimous consensus at the 77th session of the UN General Assembly on 29 March 2023.
Here is a briefing on the legal proceedings and court process at the ICJ after the UNGA adoption.
The Advisory Proceedings are well underway at the International Court of Justice.
In order to ensure that the perspectives of particularly vulnerable countries are considered by the Court, it is essential that States in the Global South, regional and sub-regional international organizations and specialized UN agencies participate fully and effectively in the advisory opinion proceedings.
The deadlines set by the Registrar of the ICJ are as follows:
22 January 2024 the time-limit within which all written statements on the questions may be presented to the Court in accordance with Article 66, paragraph 2, of the Statute;
22 April 2024 the time-limit within which States and organizations having presented written statements may submit written comments on the other written statements in accordance with Article 66, paragraph 4, of the Statute
The Government of the Republic of Vanuatu, and its partners, have offered and mobilised technical and financial resources to vulnerable Countries to be able to engage effectively in the advisory opinion proceedings.
What can you do?
Speak to your government representatives and officials at every level and urge them to proactively engage in the submission and oral hearing processes at the International Court of Justice
Make this issue a top priority for your own advocacy and communications this year by spreading the word on the initiative and calling out for governments to recall that climate action is not a mere matter of discretion, but an exacting requirement under a range of international laws.
Get involved in local government and civil society organizations to build up community awareness of climate change and its impacts on human rights and intergenerational equity, and the importance of comprehensive and progressive advisory opinion from the ICJ.