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Slovenia in the International Court of Justice proceedings in the case of Ukraine v. Russian Federation

Slovenia is participating in the oral hearing as an intervening State in the proceedings before the International Court of Justice in The Hague in the case of Ukraine v. Russian Federation, which runs from 18 to 27 September 2023. Ukraine has lodged a complaint against the Russian Federation for alleged violations of the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide.

For the first time, 32 intervening States are taking part in the proceedings before the ICJ, having exercised their right to intervene under Article 63 of the Statute of the ICJ. Pursuant to the Court's Order of 5 June 2023, the 32 States' declarations of intention to intervene in the proceedings were admissible (the Court rejected the United States' application as inadmissible).

Slovenia's views were presented by Dr Marko Rakovec, Director General of the Directorate for International Law and Protection of Interests, as agent, at the oral hearing on 20 September 2023. He stressed the integrity of the functioning of the International Court of Justice, the good faith fulfilment of treaty obligations and respect for the importance of the Genocide Convention, and in particular Article 9 thereof, in conjunction with the international obligations undertaken.

The Convention aims to prevent one of the gravest international atrocities. It is therefore essential that the text of the Convention, its correct interpretation and application be preserved in order to achieve its integrity, that is to say, to achieve and pursue a purely humanitarian and civilisational purpose in the international community.

Participation in the proceedings before the World Court places Slovenia in the circle of countries which are defenders of respect for international law and the international obligations assumed. The Court's judgment is expected in early 2024, when the term of office of the five judges will expire. The election of the judges for a nine-year term will take place in New York in November 2023. The Court's judgment in this proceeding will be particularly important in terms of assessing the relevance of the intervening States' submissions to the merits of the case and the final judgment.

In addition to Slovenia, the intervening States in the proceedings are: Germany, Australia; Austria, the Czech Republic, Liechtenstein and Slovakia (joint submission); Belgium, Croatia, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Ireland, Luxembourg, Romania and Sweden (joint submission); Bulgaria; Canada and the Netherlands (joint submission); Cyprus, Spain, France, Greece, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Norway, New Zealand, Poland, Portugal, Cyprus, Spain, France, Greece, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Norway, New Zealand, Poland, Portugal and the United Kingdom.