Dominica brings case against Switzerland to International Court of Justice

26 April 2006

Dominica today brought a case against Switzerland to the International Court of Justice (ICJ), the principal judicial organ of the United Nations, concerning alleged violations with respect to a diplomatic envoy to the UN in Geneva.

Dominica today brought a case against Switzerland to the International Court of Justice (ICJ), the principal judicial organ of the United Nations, concerning alleged violations with respect to a diplomatic envoy to the UN in Geneva.

Roman Lakschin has been accredited to the UN, its specialized agencies and the World Trade Organization (WTO) since March 1996 as a member of the Permanent Mission of Dominica. In papers filed with the ICJ, Dominica says this accreditation was “effected to the organizations and not to Switzerland” which has “claimed the right to ‘withdraw the accreditation’” on the grounds that Mr. Lakschin is a businessman and would have no right to be a diplomat.

Dominica states that this is a violation of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations and other international agreements. It also argues that Switzerland cannot be allowed to “control a small State like Dominica which has a population of merely some 70,000 people and thus is severely restrained in the selection of foreign envoys.”

Dominica is asking the Court to declare Switzerland to be in breach of its legal obligations, and to compel it to pay damages.

 

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