San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

World court rejects three more Nicaraguan claims in border dispute case against Costa Rica

The International Court of Justice based in The Hague, Netherlands, on Wednesday dismissed three more counter-claims filed by Nicaragua in a border dispute with Costa Rica, and postponed the resolution of a fourth until its final ruling in the main case.

“The court finds, unanimously, that there is no need for it to adjudicate on the admissibility of Nicaragua’s first counter-claim as such, since that claim has become without object by reason of the fact that the proceedings in the Costa Rica v. Nicaragua and Nicaragua v. Costa Rica cases were joined by an order of the court. That claim will therefore be examined as a principal claim within the context of the joined proceedings,” the ruling stated.

The court also ruled that the second and third counter-claims are inadmissible, as they do not form part of the current proceedings, since there is no direct connection between those claims and the principal claims of Costa Rica.

The ongoing border dispute with Costa Rica started over a prior occupation by Nicaraguan nationals of Isla Calero, a small territory bordering the two countries, and over navigation rights on the San Juan River, a natural border between the two countries.

Nicaragua’s response was a counter-claim to halt construction of a border road by Costa Rica along the Río San Juan, which divides the two countries, that Nicaragua claimed affected natural resources in their territory.

Last month, the world court also rejected four Nicaraguan claims on these same issues.

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