Corfu Channel Case (UK and Northern Ireland v. People’s Republic of Albania) ICJ 1949
Corfu Channel Case (UK and Northern Ireland v. People’s Republic of Albania) ICJ 194
Principle: The principle of the freedom of maritime communication. An international rout must be free from any danger, and the coastal state (the state who control the area) would be responsible of such maintenance.
Fact: Corfu is a channel between Albania and UK. In 1946 two British war ships were passing through the Corfu channel and at that time a sea mine exploded and damage both ships of Britain and as a result many of their citizen died.
Then Britain claimed compensation to Albania as they could not perform their duty to keep the international rout secure which is under their jurisdiction.
Whether the UK has violated the sovereignty of Albenia under international law by reason of the acts of the Royal Navy in Albenian waters or not?
Whether Albania had any international responsibility or not?
- The Court held that the United Kingdom had not violated Albanian sovereignty by sending warships through the strait without the prior authorization of the Albanian Government
- Albania had the responsibility to clear the sea mins and make the passage safe.
States have certain obligations, which are based on certain general and well-recognized principles, namely:
The principle of the freedom of maritime communication; and every State’s obligation not to allow knowingly its territory to be used for acts contrary to the rights of other States”