Nuclear Tests (Australia v. France)
OVERVIEW OF THE CASE
On 9 May 1973, Australia and New Zealand each instituted proceedings against France concerning tests of nuclear weapons which France proposed to carry out in the atmosphere in the South Pacific region. France stated that it considered the Court manifestly to lack jurisdiction and refrained from appearing at the public hearings or filing any pleadings. By two Orders of 22 June 1973, the Court, at the request of Australia and New Zealand, indicated provisional measures to the effect, inter alia , that pending judgment France should avoid nuclear tests causing radioactive fall-out on Australian or New Zealand territory. By two Judgments delivered on 20 December 1974, the Court found that the Applications of Australia and New Zealand no longer had any object and that it was therefore not called upon to give any decision thereon. In so doing the Court based itself on the conclusion that the objective of Australia and New Zealand had been achieved inasmuch as France, in various public statements, had announced its intention of carrying out no further atmospheric nuclear tests on the completion of the 1974 series.
This overview is provided for information only and in no way involves the responsibility of the Court.