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Five judges elected to UN's highest court

The UN Security Council and the General Assembly have jointly elected five judges to the International Court of Justice, the world body's highest court.

world Updated: Nov 07, 2008 12:23 IST

The UN Security Council and the General Assembly have jointly elected five judges to the International Court of Justice (ICJ), the world body's highest court.

Costa Rica's UN ambassador Jorge Urbina, who chairs the 15-member Security Council this month, announced that the judges would begin a nine-year term next on February 6.

The five are Antonio Cancado Trinidade of Brazil, Christopher Greenwood of Britain, Ronny Abraham of France, Awn Shawkat al-Khasawneh of Jordan and Abdulqawi Ahmed Yusuf of Somalia.

One third of the 15-member court is elected every three years. If a judge dies or resigns during his or her term of office, a special election is held as soon as possible to choose a judge to fill the remainder of the term.

Abraham and al-Khasawneh are already currently serving on the ICJ, which is based in the Dutch city of The Hague. Their term expires on February 5.

The ICJ was established in June 1945 by the UN Charter to settle, in accordance with international law, legal disputes submitted to it by states and can also be asked by the General Assembly and other UN organs and agencies to give an advisory opinion on legal questions.