International Court of Justice



There have been many instances in history that reek of the stench of failed leadership, leaving a trail of wars, disasters and failures behind. For instance, the 2003 American invasion of Iraq was built on the false assumption that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction. Perhaps the capsizing of Saddam Hussein was a good idea in theory, but the leadership responsible for this operation failed to take the monetary and human cost of this action into account. Putting the many losses in American and Iraqi lives aside, the purpose of invading Iraq took a massive backslide when a brutal regime was replaced by anarchism and terrorism.

A more recent example is the BREXIT referendum. British Prime Minister David Cameron gambled with his country’s future when he suggested the idea of leaving the European union to please some of his more conservative MPs without putting much thought into how this notion will greatly impact Britain and the world’s economy.

Leaders around the world face the obligation of fighting terrorism, but sometimes the lines blur and they end up exacerbating the problem. For example, Putin has taken it upon himself to help fight the terrorists in Syria. However, it is unclear what Russia thinks “terrorists” are. The cost of bombing Syria for the sake of fighting terrorists has been the loss of many innocent Syrian lives and the destruction of sites of historical significance.

So when we come together to solve issues of justice that plague our societies, I urge you all to think of the cost of your decisions. Think about the social justice issues that have been recurring in the news; police brutality in the US, the Syrians who are either displaced or stuck in a country plagued by war and terrorism…

While you are attending KAMUN17, you will be thinking of two issues, the closest to home being the Kurdish plea for an independent state, and the farthest being the territorial dispute between Somalia and Kenya. Our attention will be equally divided between these two cases so that we can reach a decision regarding these conflicts. it is your job to be the primary contributors to the resolution of these conflicts, so let’s bring these cases to life.


Leen Al-Zu’bi and Hyun Taek Lim,

President and Deputy President of the International Court of Justice.

Leen Al-Zu’bi
President of the International Court of Justice


Phone Number: +962 7 9739 0904

Hyun Taek Lim
Deputy President of the International Court of Justice


Phone Number: +962 7 9659 3868

** Download “ICJ Guide

Topic 1: Maritime Delimitation in the Indian Ocean (Somalia v. Kenya).

After 6 years of dispute, between themselves, Somalia has accused Kenya of not keeping the maritime delimitation in the Indian Ocean to the ICJ. Both Somalia and Kenya have diplomatically exchanged their views and opinions, but failed to reach into an agreement. Somalia has requested the Court “to determine, on the basis of international law, the complete course of the single maritime boundary…”

The Somali government argues that the maritime border should continue Southeast at the same angle as the land border; the border for the Somalis has to extend diagonally to the South Kiunga into the sea, not like today. The Kenyan government wants it to stretch out to the east, taking a perpendicular line to the land boundary, just like how the border is currently. The Somalis are arguing based on the sea zone proscribed by the United Nations Convention, also known as the exclusive economic zone (EEZ), submitting a 150 page document to the court. The Kenyan government also submitted data evidence to the United Nations, claiming that Somalia just wishes to take control of the natural resources, contravening the national sovereignty of Kenya.

If the Somali wins, Kenya will almost be landlocked, losing its only access to the various undersea resources and medium of International Ocean trading. Not only the ocean resources matter, but also the security of the Horn of Africa; since Kenya has supported the Somalis’ effort to suppress Al-shabaab, the Kenyan government might stop the support if it loses the right over the contested area. Moreover, Kenya is arguing that the Somalis are making a fake and illogical claim, due to the April agreement made in 2009. For Somalia, she should definitely gain the rights over the contested area, since the law “supports” her opinion. Thus, this dispute has the capability of distorting the key to the economic not only the development of the region, Horn of Africa, but also the two opposing countries.

Territorial disputes between two countries are always interesting and very controversial. This case, specifically, holds the key to the development of the two countries and the Horn of Africa. Al-shabaab will get affected by the result of this conflict too. It is interesting to see two countries both arguing different opinions based on different laws and agreements. We also wanted the delegates to study and research about a recent case happening in a different region, as global citizens. We are looking forward to starting this case.

Packet 1: link

Topic 2: Territorial and Frontier Dispute (Kurdistan v. Iraq).

An independence referendum for Iraqi Kurdistan was planned to be held in 2014 after years of controversy and dispute between the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) and the Federal Government of Iraq. Public and international calls for independence gained impetus after the Northern IRaq Offensive by ISIL. Due to the increasing of ISIL attacks on the Iraqi government and people, the referendum kept on getting postponed until further notice. Therefore, the KRG decided to appeal before the International Court of Justice to settle this dispute on international and neutral grounds away from conflict and as soon as possible.

The Kurds umber around 30 million people, making Kurdistan the largest stateless nation. The Kurds in Iraq claim to have been discriminated against by the Iraqi government and people since Saddam Hussein’s rule. They claim to not ‘fit in’ with the Iraqi people because of their different heritage and descendance. After several separatists movements,  failed conquests, and continuous conflict, the Kurds have finally reached out to the ICJ (as an autonomous zone of Iraq.) The main argument the Kurds make is that it is more beneficial for them to have an independent autonomous state in terms of the rights and safety of their citizens, their ties to the west, and their different political direction. Iraq, on the other hand, thinks that it is better to have Kurdistan remain as an autonomous zone of Iraq. Saddam Hussein was notorious for the little attention he gave the Kurds and their calls for separation. He believed that Iraq is powerful in its diversity.

If Kurdistan wins, then the Kurds will have their independence, but they will have to separate in a dangerous and unstable time in the history of the Middle East. If Iraq wins, then Kurdistan will have to remain an autonomous zone under the Iraqi government’s control. This is an interesting case because the actual referendum will be held sometime before the upcoming US election day in November. This will test the delegates’ abilities to compare outcomes and weigh them in before making decisions. The best option might not be the biggest or most obvious. This case is not only about the physical territorial dispute between these two nations, it is also about figuring out how they will come to a conclusion what with the unstable politics in the region. They will have to think of allies, neighboring countries and their politics, look back to the history of these two nations, look into the economy of Kurdistan, and to analyze the case packets with scrutiny.

Packet 2: link