International Courts are judicial bodies set up by treaties between nations or by the United Nations or other such bodies. They include ad hoc tribunals. The concept of International Courts is not new as their existence can be traced back to early years of the 20th Century.
The jurisdiction of these courts is usually restricted to a particular issue or a nation. These courts are judged by international laws and treaties. Some of the most important International Courts are:
International Criminal Court,
African Court of Justice,
European Court of Human Rights, etc.
In 1990s the first international tribunal was set up with the purpose to investigate crimes committed by civilians, politicians and military personnel during armed conflicts. These tribunals are bound to report to the UN Security Council. They operate in accordance with law of the nation in question or a combination of international and domestic law. The judges who decide on such matters are appointed from the related nations or international community.
At present there are five such tribunals which are International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY), Special Court for Sierra Leone (SCSL), Special Tribunal for Lebanon (STL), International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) and Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC).
International Court of Justice (ICJ)
The International Court of Justice is one of the main judicial bodies of the United Nations. ICJ was established under the United Nations Charter in June 1945 and started its work from April 1946 as the successor to Permanent Court of International Justice. The composition of ICJ includes 15 judges for a term of 9 years elected by UN general Assembly and UN Security Council. The Judges are elected regardless of their nationality. Selection is based on character of high moral who are qualified highest judicial officers in their nation or lawyers with competence in International law. Judges can be dismissed through unanimous vote of the court's members. The jurisdiction of the court depends on two issues based on advisory options and contentious issues. The administrative body which assists the court is the Registry and the official language is English and French. The court is situated in the Peace Palace in the Hague, Netherlands.
Directory of International Courts and Tribunals