UN court: Colombia infringed Nicaragua’s rights in Caribbean

Apr 21, 2022, 3:04 AM | Updated: 1:21 pm
FILE - Exterior view of the International Court of Justice, or World Court, in The Hague, Netherlan...

FILE - Exterior view of the International Court of Justice, or World Court, in The Hague, Netherlands, Friday, Feb. 2, 2018. The United Nations' highest court ruled Thursday, April 21, 2022 that Colombia breached Nicaragua's rights in waters of the Caribbean, including by hindering Nicaraguan fishing vessels and granting fishing permits for Colombian and other boats. (AP Photo/Peter Dejong, File)

(AP Photo/Peter Dejong, File)

THE HAGUE, Netherlands (AP) — The United Nations’ highest court ruled Thursday that Colombia breached Nicaragua’s rights in waters of the Caribbean Sea, including by hindering Nicaraguan fishing vessels and granting fishing permits for Colombian and other boats.

The majority ruling of the International Court of Justice gave Nicaragua a victory in a lengthy legal battle, although it may not fully end the dispute between the two Latin American nations.

Nicaragua filed the case in 2013, claiming that Colombia violated its sovereignty in the western Caribbean, a region of the sea long claimed by both countries that is home to a UNESCO-listed biosphere reserve inhabited by dozens of endangered species.

In a 9-6 vote, the world court ruled that Colombia “must immediately cease the conduct,” ICJ President Jean E. Donoghue said during a public reading of the decision.

The judges voted 10-5 to establish that Colombia infringed Nicaragua’s rights “by interfering with fishing and marine scientific research activities” of Nicaraguan or Nicaraguan-licensed vessels and with naval activities “and by purporting to enforce conservation measures” in Nicaragua’s waters.

Colombia said the ruling had positives for Bogota, despite imposing limits on its naval activities.

“They limited some of its functions in the sense that they cannot undertake environmental control activities, which is a shame because we do have the ability to do that,” Colombia’s representative to the court, Carlos Gustavo Arrieta Padilla, told reporters. “But nevertheless, the court maintained the possibility of the Colombian navy being there and doing operations in the fight against organized crime in the area.”

A 2012 ruling by the world court gave Nicaragua fishing rights over much of the western Caribbean, but Colombia’s navy has continued to patrol the waters, which are also used by traffickers to smuggle drugs into Central America.

At hearings last year, Nicaragua argued that Colombian naval ships were infringing on its fishing rights by patrolling the area that the court had awarded to Nicaragua as an “exclusive economic zone.”

The country also alleged that Colombia’s navy has dissuaded vessels with Nicaraguan fishing permits from operating in the area while providing protection to vessels with Colombian permits.

Colombia denied the accusations and said its navy patrolled the area to fight drug trafficking and to protect the Seaflower Marine Reserve, an area created by Colombia that is on UNESCO’s global list of biosphere reserves and overlaps the economic zone awarded to Nicaragua in the 2012 ruling.

In a win for Colombia, the court majority said in Thursday’s ruling that points used by Nicaragua to delineate its territorial waters after the 2012 judgment were “not in conformity with customary international law.”

Rulings by the court are final and legally binding.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

Associated Press

Chinese envoy expresses concern over US tariffs with Yellen

BEIJING (AP) — China’s envoy to trade war talks with Washington expressed concern about U.S. tariffs on Chinese imports during a phone call Tuesday with Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, the Ministry of Commerce announced, but it gave no indication of progress toward resolving an array of conflicts. Vice Premier Liu He and Yellen also discussed […]
24 hours ago
A woman wearing a face mask walks past a bank's electronic board showing the Hong Kong share index ...
Associated Press

Asia shares rise on optimism about easing COVID restrictions

TOKYO (AP) — Asian shares advanced Monday across the board as buying set in after the lull of a U.S. national holiday. Analysts said the optimism may be driven by expectations the U.S. may decide to cut Chinese tariffs, a welcome move that would also help tame inflation. China’s Commerce Ministry said Tuesday that Vice […]
24 hours ago
A man paddles on a stand-up paddle board through a flooded street at Windsor on the outskirts of Sy...
Associated Press

Australian central bank boosts rate for 3rd month in a row

CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — Australia’s central bank on Tuesday lifted its benchmark interest rate for a third time in three straight months, changing the cash rate to 1.35% from 0.85%. The Reserve Bank of Australia’s half a percentage point rise was the same size as its June increase. When the bank lifted the rate by […]
24 hours ago
A woman wearing a face mask walks past a bank's electronic board showing the Hong Kong share index ...
Associated Press

Asia shares rise on optimism about easing COVID restrictions

TOKYO (AP) — Asian shares advanced Monday across the board as buying set in after the lull of a U.S. national holiday. Analysts said the optimism may be driven by expectations the U.S. may decide to cut Chinese tariffs, a welcome move that would also help tame inflation. China’s Commerce Ministry said Tuesday that Vice […]
24 hours ago
FILE - Former Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach speaks in Leavenworth, Kan., on July 8, 2019. K...
Associated Press

Kobach looks for comeback in Kansas after losing 2 big races

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Kansas voters have said no to him twice over the past four years. But Kris Kobach is nonetheless betting that this can be the year he makes a political comeback. His losses, including a 2018 defeat that handed the governor’s office in this Republican-leaning state to a Democrat, might end other […]
24 hours ago
Republican gubernatorial candidate state Sen. Brian Dahle, left, talks with fellow GOP state Sen. A...
Associated Press

Newsom’s opponent: I’m reasonable, not a ‘crazy Republican’

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — Brian Dahle, the Republican Party’s longshot hope to unseat Gov. Gavin Newsom in California, knows that to win in his progressive home state he can’t allow Democrats to label him as an election denying, abortion-hating, gun-loving, bombastic right-winger. It’s why Dahle, an affable farmer and state senator from the sparsely populated […]
24 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

...
Day & Night Air

Tips to lower your energy bill in the Arizona heat

Does your summer electric bill make you groan? Are you looking for effective ways to reduce your bill?
...
Arizona Division of Problem Gambling

Arizona Division of Problem Gambling provides exclusion solution for young sports bettors

Sports betting in Arizona opened a new world to young adults, one where putting down money on games was as easy as sending a text message.
...
Carla Berg, MHS, Deputy Director, Public Health Services, Arizona Department of Health Services

ADHS mobile program brings COVID-19 vaccines and boosters to Arizonans

The Arizona Department of Health Services and partner agencies are providing even more widespread availability by making COVID-19 vaccines available in neighborhoods through trusted community partners.
UN court: Colombia infringed Nicaragua’s rights in Caribbean