The advisory opinion of the International Court of Justice in the Kosovo case will be delivered on 22 July, at 3.00 p.m, by the President of the Court, H.E. Hisashi Owada.
The question about the legality of Kosovo’s declaration of independence of 17 February 2008 was submitted to the Court through resolution 63/3 (A/63/L.2) of 8 October 2008 by the United Nations General Assembly (based on a draft resolution sponsored by Serbia).The question put before the Court is: “Is the unilateral declaration of independence by the Provisional Institutions of Self-Government of Kosovo in accordance with international law?”.
Thirty seven States, including Kosovo, submitted their written submissions in the first phase of the written proceedings (17 April 2009). Fifteen States, including Kosovo, submitted written comments on the other written statements in the second phase of the written proceedings (17 July 2009). 29 States, including Kosovo, participated in the oral proceedings which took place from 1-11 December 2009. As the numbers themselves indicate, this case has attracted a lot of attention. At present Kosovo is recognized by 69 States. In a recent resolution, the European Parliament called on the five EU states that have not recognized Kosovo this far, to do so in the near future.
Having myself been closely involved in these legal proceedings on behalf of Albania, I cannot really wait to hear the advisory opinion of the Court. Hopefully, this advisory opinion will contribute to the consolidation of peace and friendly relations in the Balkans.
How can a declaration of independence be considered illegal? By separating yourself from a particular country, you’re effectively rejecting their rules, aren’t you?