19 November 1949


General List No. 1


international Court of Justice


Corfu Channel


United Kingdom






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BEFORE: President: J.G. Guerrero
PermaLink: http://www.worldcourts.com/icj/eng/decisions/1949.11.19_corfu.htm
Citation: Corfu Channel, U.K. v. Albania, Order, 1949 I.C.J. 237 (Nov. 19)

The International Court of Justice,

After deliberation,

Having regard to Articles 48, 50 and 53 of the Statute of the Court and to Article 57 of the Rules of Court,

Whereas, on April 9th, 1949, the Court gave judgment that the People's Republic of Albania is responsible under international law for the explosions which occurred on October 22nd, 1946, in Albanian waters and for the resulting damage and loss of human life suffered by the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland;

Whereas, in the said Judgment, the Court reserved for further consideration the assessment of the amount of compensation;

Whereas, on the same day, the Court made an Order under Article 48 of the Statute, fixing various time-limits for the Parties to present their observations on the amount of compensation demanded by the United Kingdom Government from the People's Republic of Albania; [p 238]

Whereas the Government of the People's Republic of Albania has failed to defend its case and whereas, therefore, the Agent of the Government of the United Kingdom has asked that the Court decide in favour of the claim of his Government;

Whereas the Albanian Government, duly notified, did not present itself before the Court at the public hearing of November 17th, 1949;

Whereas that Government therefore is in the situation envisaged in Article 53 of the Statute;

Whereas in these conditions paragraph 2 of the said Article is applicable;

Whereas the estimates and figures submitted by the Government of the United Kingdom raise questions of a technical nature which call for the application of Article 50 of the Statute;

The Agent of this Government having been duly heard;

Decides that
(1) Experts designated by the Court shall examine the figures and estimates stated in the last submissions filed by the Government of the United Kingdom regarding the amount of its claim for the loss of the Saumarez and the damage caused to the Volage;

(2) This examination shall be entrusted to Rear-Admiral J. B. Berck, of the Royal Netherlands Navy, and Mr. G. de Rooy, Director of Naval Construction, Royal Netherlands Navy;

(3) Each expert shall make the following declaration:

"I solemnly declare, upon my honour and conscience, that I will perform my duties in all sincerity and will abstain from divulging or using outside the Court any secrets which may come to my knowledge in the course of the performance of my task";

(4) The Registrar shall be responsible for the secretarial arrangements required by the experts; he may appoint a high official of the Registry to perform these duties;

(5) The Registrar shall place the relevant pleadings and documents at the disposal of the experts;

(6) The experts shall file their report in the Registry at the latest on the 2nd of December, 1949. The report shall be communicated by the Registry to the Agents of the Parties. [p 239]

Done in French and in English, the English text being authoritative, at the Peace Palace, The Hague, this nineteenth day of November, one thousand nine hundred and forty-nine, in three copies, one of which will be placed in the archives of the Court and the others transmitted to the Governments of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and of the People's Republic of Albania respectively.

(Signed) J. G. Guerrero,
Acting President.

(Signed) E. Hambro,






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