Dalveer Bhandari elected ICJ judge: The re-election of Dalveer Bhandari to International Court of Justice (ICJ) once again showed India’s diplomatic supremacy in the global arena. The re-election was not an easy one as Bhandari and Christopher Greenwood of Britain were locked in a neck-to-neck battle. But Bhandari received 183 of the 193 votes in the General Assembly and secured all 15 votes in the Security Council to fill the final vacancy on the Hague-based ICJ. The 70-year-old re-elected for a fresh nine-year term at the ICJ after Britain withdrew its candidate Christopher Greenwood from the race about an hour before the scheduled voting. Prime Minister Narendra Modi yesterday acknowledged the tremendous efforts and credited the efforts of External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and MEA officials for the outcome. It has been learnt that Swaraj was instrumental in this whole exercise and played a pivotal role to secure Bhandari’s entry to the supreme judicial body. Swaraj made 60 calls to foreign ministers of various countries, according to Times of India report. Britain will not have a judge on the world court’s 15-member panel for the first time. Also for the first time in 70 years, a permanent member of the Security Council lost to a non-permanent member for a seat in the ICJ. These signify how big the win was for India.
PM Modi also expressed gratitude to members of the UN General Assembly and the UN Security Council for “their support and trust in India.” “Congratulations to EAM @SushmaSwaraj and her entire team at MEA & diplomatic missions for their untiring efforts that have led to India’s re-election to ICJ. ” Our deep gratitude to all the members of UNGA as well as UNSC for their support and trust in India,” the Prime Minister tweeted.
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BJP president Amit Shah had also described Justice Dalveer Bhandari’s re-election to the International Court of Justice as a “huge diplomatic win” and applauded Prime Minister Narendra Modi and External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj. “With every step and effort of the Modi Government, we see the reflection of a strong and decisive leadership. I applaud Prime Minister Narendra Modi and External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj for this huge diplomatic win,” Shah tweeted.
The ICJ has a bench of 15 judges, five of whom are elected every three years for a nine-year term. To be elected, the candidate needed a majority in both the chambers. Established in 1945, the role of the ICJ is to settle, in accordance with international law, legal disputes submitted to it by states and to give advisory opinions on legal questions.