Kenya's Request in Somalia Ocean Case Rejected

  • Uhuru and Farmaajo
    Somali President Mohammed Abdullahi Farmaajo and Kenya's President Uhuru Kenyatta
  • International Court of Justice has denied Kenya’s request to postpone the hearing of the Somali maritime border case that has been ongoing.

    The International Court of Justice(ICJ) has set oral proceedings of the maritime case to commence on Monday, March 15, 2021.

    On February 11, 2021, the Information Minister of Somalia, Osman Dubbe, said that Mogadishu had made a petition to the ICJ regarding the case.

    Farmaajo and Uhuru
    President Farmaajo and President Kenyatta addressing the press

    The petition made by Somalia to the (ICJ) sought to reject Kenya's request for the postponement of the case for the fourth time.

    "We have rejected Kenya's fourth request to the ICJ to postpone the two countries' maritime case," said Dubbe.

    Mr. Dubbe further insisted that justice delayed is justice denied, adding that the two countries should head to the Hague at whatever cost to have the matter sorted.

    The dispute between the two neighbouring countries is rooted in a disagreement over which direction their borders extends into the Indian Ocean.

    In August 2014, Somalia sued Kenya at the ICJ, seeking to redraw the sea boundary to a diagonal flow, an extension of the land border south of Kiunga.

    Kenya on its part, insists that the border should take roughly a 45-degree turn at the shoreline along the latitudinal line which will allow Kenya access to the biggest part of the Indian Ocean.

    Disputed Kenya- Somalia Maritime Border

    In December 15, 2020, Somalia severed its diplomatic ties with Kenya accusing Kenya of constantly meddling in Mogadishu's territorial and internal affairs.

    During the IGAD summit in Djibouti on December 20, 2020, Somalia raised her grievances against Kenya causing the IGAD Assembly to call for a verification of the allegations.

    In January 27, 2020, the appointed fact finding team report dismissed Somalia's allegations saying there was no concrete evidence to back their claims.

    Somalia threatened to opt out of IGAD dismissing the report by its fact finding committee terming it as biased, partisan, unfair, compromised and predetermined to acquit Kenya.