Governance – Siting of Diplomatic Missions
The State of Palestine institutes proceedings against the United States of America
THE HAGUE, 28 September 2018. The State of Palestine today instituted proceedings against the United States of America before the International Court of Justice (ICJ), the principal judicial organ of the United Nations, with respect to a dispute concerning alleged violations of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations of 18 April 1961 (hereinafter the “Vienna Convention”).
It is recalled in the Application that, on 6 December 2017, the President of the United States recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and announced the relocation of the American Embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. The American Embassy in Jerusalem was then inaugurated on 14 May 2018.
Palestine contends that it flows from the Vienna Convention that the diplomatic mission of a sending State must be established on the territory of the receiving State. According to Palestine, in view of the special status of Jerusalem, “[t]he relocation of the United States Embassy in Israel to . . . Jerusalem constitutes a breach of the Vienna Convention”.
As basis for the Court’s jurisdiction, the Applicant invokes Article 1 of the Optional Protocol to the Vienna Convention concerning the Compulsory Settlement of Disputes. It notes that Palestine acceded to the Vienna Convention on 2 April 2014 and to the Optional Protocol on 22 March 2018, whereas the United States of America is a party to both these instruments since 13 November 1972….