Kenya-Somalia Maritime Dispute Case to Commence in November

12 September 2019

The International Court of Justice on Wednesday announced closure date for the public hearings of the Kenya-Somalia maritime dispute.

In a statement, the Hague based court said the hearing should end on November 8, 2019.

"... the principal judicial organ of the United Nations, will hold public hearings in the case concerning Maritime Delimitation in the Indian Ocean (Somalia vs Kenya), from Monday 4 to Friday 8 November 2019 at the Peace Palace in The Hague, the seat of the Court."

Last week, the Court had agreed to reschedule the sessions after Kenya asked for time to recruit a new legal defence team.

"The hearings in this case have been rescheduled further to the request made by the Republic of Kenya on 3 September 2019 and taking into account the views expressed by the Federal Republic of Somalia on that request," ICJ added.

The Court had only announced the hearings were to start on November 4.

Initially, ICJ had set the hearing for September 9 to September 14.

The hearing is the last part of the programme after which a verdict will be delivered in two weeks time.

Kenya's current legal team include American Prof Payam Akhavan, Prof Vaughan Lowe QC from the UK, Prof Alan Boyle (British), Prof Mathias Forteau (French), Mr Karim Khan (British) and Ms Amy Sanders (British).

Kenya has under 50 days to recruit a new team that will take on Somalia during the public hearings.

Somalia will go first on November 4 thereafter Kenya responds on November 6.

There will be no sessions on November 5. The two sides will then resume presentations on November 7 and 8.

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