Judge Dire Tladi begins his term at ICJ after swearing-in

Dire Tladi has began his new term as judge of the International Court of Justice. Picture: Supplied / University of Pretoria

Dire Tladi has began his new term as judge of the International Court of Justice. Picture: Supplied / University of Pretoria

Published Feb 6, 2024


Professor Dire Tladi has been formally sworn-in at The Hague as a new judge of the International Court of Justice.

South Africa’s diplomat in the Netherlands, Vusi Madonsela was present during the swearing-in ceremony on Tuesday.

Tladi, who is an expert in international law, was elected to the ICJ by the United Nations General Assembly and Security Council.

The court asked each of the four new judges to take an oath of office.

“I solemnly declare that I will perform my duties and exercise my powers as judge, honourably, faithfully, impartially and conscientiously,” said Tladi as he began his new term.

He will serve in the ICJ for the next nine years.

Tladi starts his term a few weeks after South Africa won its case against Israel in the ICJ.

South Africa had filed its application in the ICJ on December 29 after Cabinet had decided at its meeting a few weeks earlier that they will take the escalation of the crisis in Gaza to the top UN court.

The World Court presided over the matter and agreed that Israel must take provisional measures to stop the attacks in the Gaza Strip.

The UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine (UNRWA) said this week they cannot deliver humanitarian supplies in Gaza because of continued attacks by the Israeli Defence Forces.

“We cannot deliver humanitarian aid under fire. Safe and sustainable humanitarian access is urgently needed everywhere, including to the north of Gaza,” said UNRWA.

This was after a convoy of trucks carrying food was hit by Israeli gunfire.

Minister of International Relations Naledi Pandor has called on the international community to put pressure on Israel to comply with the order of the ICJ.

South Africa has insisted that humanitarian aid cannot not be delivered if there was no ceasefire.

Tladi begins his term at the time the ICJ was set to hear the merits of the case brought by South Africa.

Other countries have joined South Africa in its application in the UN court.

Tladi has previously served in the UN as legal adviser and special rapporteur.

Tladi was was legal adviser to the Minister of International Relations and later adviser to the South African mission in New York.

Tladi and three other judges from Romania, the US and Mexico replace four judges who are retiring, and they include the ICJ President, Joan Donoghue from the US, Vice President of the ICJ, Kirill Gevorgian from Russia, Judge Mohamed Bennouna from Morocco, and Judge Patrick Robinson from Jamaica.

Tladi was sworn with Juan Manuel Gomez Robledo of Mexico, Sarah Hull of the US and Bogdan-Lucian Aurescu of Romania.