08 Dec So Ukraine May Sue Russia for Violating Anti-Terrorism Financing Convention
Things are not going well for Ukraine these days as Russia has managed to solidify its control over Crimea and is continuing support for breakaway regions in Eastern Ukraine. It is very hard to justify the legality of Russia’s actions, so it is not surprising that Ukraine is looking for any and all international fora to sue Russia.
As usual, the great challenge is to find an international court with jurisdiction. Ukraine has added a bunch of new cases to the already crowded Russia docket of the European Court of Human Rights. But I had been wondering how Ukraine planned to bring Russia to other courts like the International Court of Justice since Russia has not accepted the compulsory jurisdiction of that court.
Well, according to this report, it looks like Russia has accepted the compulsory jurisdiction of ICJ for disputes under the International Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism. Article 24(1) of the Convention states:
Any dispute between two or more States Parties concerning the interpretation or application of this Convention which cannot be settled through negotiation within a reasonable time shall, at the request of one of them, be submitted to arbitration. If, within six months from the date of the request for arbitration, the parties are unable to agree on the organization of the arbitration, any one of those parties may refer the dispute to the International Court of Justice, by application, in conformity with the Statute of the Court.
Although Russia could have avoided jurisdiction under paragraph 2 (as the United States did), Russia did not do so. So Russia could face an ICJ case, which I imagine it will ignore. But I am not sure it could brazenly claim the ICJ lacked jurisdiction, so it will be interesting to see whether Russia decides to litigate (and maybe even file counterclaims)?