POST TIME: 1 September, 2018 00:00 00 AM
UN court to mull Chagos Islands fate

UN court to mull Chagos Islands fate

THE HAGUE: International judges will hear arguments Monday to examine the fate of the British-ruled Chagos Islands, home to a strategic joint US military base—now claimed by Mauritius, reports AFP. In a diplomatic blow to Britain last year, the United Nations adopted a resolution presented by Mauritius and backed by African countries, asking the International Court of Justice to offer an advisory opinion on the island chain’s fate.

For four days next week, the Hague-based ICJ will listen to arguments presented by 22 countries including Mauritius and Britain. The African Union is also expected give an opinion.

The ICJ will then give a final opinion on the matter, but its ruling is not binding on the parties. Discussions will centre around the consequences of Britain’s separation of the archipelago from Mauritius in 1965.

Mauritius declared independence in 1968 and argues that it was illegal for London to break up its territory while still under colonial rule.