- The International Court of Justice (ICJ) is expected to deliver the judgement on the maritime border dispute with Somalia today seven months after Kenya pulled out of the case.
- Both countries are contesting 30,000 square nautical miles of territory in the Indian Ocean, with prospects of huge oil and gas deposits.
The International Court of Justice (ICJ) is expected to deliver the judgement on the maritime border dispute with Somalia today seven months after Kenya pulled out of the case.
Kenya had maintained ground that it won't be subjected to International litigation without consent in the future ahead of the ruling by ICJ on the maritime border with its neighbour Somalia.
Kenya officially withdrew from the set date of hearing, which was March 15, 2021, after having requested for the fourth time an extension of the hearing.
Both countries are contesting 30,000 square nautical miles of territory in the Indian ocean, with prospects of huge oil and gas deposits.
While re-affirming Kenya's withdrawal from the ICJ, Foreign affairs Principal Secretary Macharia Kamau said on Friday that the Impending judgement was the culmination of the flawed process.
“For these reasons, and besides withdrawing its participation from the current case, Kenya, on the 24th September 2021, also joined many other members of the United Nations in withdrawing its recognition of the Court’s compulsory jurisdiction. As a sovereign nation, Kenya shall no longer be subjected to an international court or tribunal without its express consent,” said Kamau.
The contested area is believed to be rich in oil and gas, with both countries accusing each other of auction off blocks even as the case is in court.
The ICJ in 2019 set up public hearings for between September 9 and 14 of that year but would later push the starting date to November 4 after granting Kenya's request for more time to recruit a new legal team.
In June last year, Kenya then requested another postponement this time citing the pandemic as the main reason.
The United Nations, therefore, had to delay the hearing till March 2021.
July 22 this year,President Kenyatta reiterated Kenya's decision never to surrender any part of her territory to anyone.
He said Kenya will continue to guard its borders and cautioned unnamed external forces against disrespecting the Country's territorial integrity.
“We will not accept anyone claiming ownership of any part of our land. Just as we have respected the boundaries of other countries, we expect that our borders and land are equally respected,” said the President.