MANILA – The Philippine government, through the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA), has reaffirmed its “full support” for the International Court of Justice (ICJ) to settle the dispute between Ukraine and Russia, days after it ordered the latter to halt its military operations in Ukraine.
“[T]he Philippines takes this opportunity to reaffirm its full support for the International Court of Justice, the principal judicial organ of the United Nations,” the DFA said in a March 23 statement.
“The Philippines further urges Russia and Ukraine to abide by the decision of the International Court of Justice and to continue exerting every effort, short of the latter surrendering any portion or particle of a state’s sovereignty and the rights, privileges, and prerogatives pertaining thereto – war is not the worst evil nor is peace at the price of submission– to peacefully settle their dispute in the interest of upholding the rule of law and maintaining international peace and security,” it added.
The DFA said it notes the court’s profound concern about the use of force by Russia and the continuing loss of life and human suffering in Ukraine.
Last March 16, the ICJ issued three provisional measures, one of which ordered the Russian Federation to “immediately suspend the military operations that it commenced on February 24.”
Unanimously, the ICJ also ordered both parties “to refrain from any action which might aggravate or extend the dispute before the Court or make it more difficult to resolve”.
The world court’s ruling was in response to a suit filed by Ukraine on February 27, contending that Russia used false claims of genocide against the people of Luhansk and Donetsk oblasts to justify its military operations.
Ukraine has repeatedly denied that any such genocide has occurred.
Article 41 of the Statute of the ICJ states that the world court has the power to indicate provisional measures to preserve the respective rights of either party pending a final decision.
While ICJ decisions are binding, the court, however, has no direct means of enforcing them.
Despite this, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy hailed the ruling as a “complete victory”. In a March 16 tweet, he said Russia must comply immediately else it gets isolated even further. (PNA)