Top UN court backs Qatar in airspace dispute with blockading nations

Top UN court backs Qatar in airspace dispute with blockading nations

By QLNews

In a massive victory for Qatar, a top United Nations (UN) court has backed Qatar in the Gulf airspace blockade dispute.

The International Court of Justice (ICJ) today ruled in favor of Qatar, affirming that it is Qatar's right to challenge airspace restrictions imposed by neighboring countries Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Bahrain and Egypt (“the Blockading States”) before the UN’s aviation body, the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO).

The Hague-based ICJ rejected the appeal by the four blockading nations against a decision by the world civil aviation body in favor of Qatar over sovereign airspace, ICJ President Abdulqawi Ahmed Yusuf said, Al Jazeera reported.

According to a press statement issued by the Government Communications Office (GCO), Qatar welcomes the ICJ ruling.

"Since June 2017, the Blockading States have prohibited Qatar-registered aircraft from flying to or from their airports and overflying their national airspaces, in flagrant violation of international law," the GCO said,

"In two judgments released today, the ICJ rejected all three grounds of appeal raised by the Blockading States, finding that the ICAO has jurisdiction to hear Qatar’s claims. The ICAO Council will now resume its proceedings," the GCO added.

His Excellency Qatar's Minister of Transport and Communications of the State of Qatar, Jassim Saif Ahmed Al-Sulaiti commented, “We welcome today’s decision by the ICJ that will see the Blockading States finally face justice for violating international aviation rules. We are confident that the ICAO will ultimately find these actions unlawful. This is the latest in a series of rulings that expose the Blockading Countries’ continued disregard for international law and due process. Step by step their arguments are being dismantled, and Qatar’s position vindicated.”

Ever since the illegal blockade was imposed, in June 2017, Qatar has maintained that the siege nations have violated international law and acted illegally, the GCO pointed out.

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Source: GCO

 

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