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165-Land Boundary in the Northern Part of Isla Portillos (Costa Rica v. Nicaragua)

On January 16th, 2017 Costa Rica filed an Application instituting proceedings before the International Court of Justice (ICJ) against Nicaragua regarding a dispute ”concerning the precise definition of the boundary in the area of Los Portillos/Harbor Head Lagoon and the establishment of a new military camp by Nicaragua” on the beach of Isla Portillos.

In its application, Costa Rica also requested that this claim be joined with the case number 157-Maritime Delimitation in the Caribbean Sea and the Pacific Ocean (Costa Rica v. Nicaragua), according with the Article 47 of the Rules of the Court.

Noting the close link between the two cases and the imperative of good administration of justice, the ICJ decided by order of February 02nd, 2017, to join both proceedings. 

Order of 02-02-2017.pdf

The Court ruled on the merits of the case in its judgment of February 02nd, 2018 in which it asserted the sovereignty of Costa Rica over the entire northern part of Isla Portillos, up to the point where the right bank of the San Juan River meets the low water of the coast of the Caribbean Sea, with the exception of the lagoon of Harbor Head and the coastal barrier separating the latter from the Caribbean Sea, over which sovereignty is Nicaraguan within the boundary defined in paragraph 73 of the case. It also found that, by establishing and maintaining a military camp on Costa Rican territory, the Nicaragua has violated the sovereignty of Costa Rica, and that Nicaragua must remove its military camp from Costa Rica territory.

Judgment of 02-02-2018.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.