058- Nuclear Tests (Australia vs France)

On May 9th, 1973, Australia filed before the International Court of Justice (ICJ) an application instituting proceedings against France concerning the nuclear weapons tests in the atmosphere which that State proposed to carry out in the South Pacific region. France communicated to the Court its decision not to participate in the proceedings.

Australia had accompanied its application with a request for the indication of provisional measures to order France to refrain from conducting nuclear tests causing the deposit of radioactive fallout on Australian territory. The ICJ took such measures in its Order of June 22nd, 1973.

Order of 22-06-1973.pdf

France later publicly stated that it no longer wanted to conduct atmospheric nuclear tests once the 1974 campaign was over. The Court therefore held by judgment of December 20th, 1974 that Australia’s application was now without legal basis and that there was no longer any need to adjudicate.

Judgment of 20-12-1974.pdf

This summary is provided for informational purposes only, does not involve the responsibility of Dome and should in no way be used as a substitute for a careful reading of the judgment and order of the case.