Professor Murphy Urges World Court to Find Jurisdiction in Case Protecting Ethnic Armenians from Racial Discrimination

May 10, 2024
Professor Sean Murphy arguing before the Hague

GW Law Professor Sean D. Murphy argued before the International Court of Justice (World Court) in The Hague, Netherlands, in favor the Court’s jurisdiction in a case that seeks to protect ethnic Armenians from racial discrimination by the Republic of Azerbaijan.

Appearing on behalf of the Republic of Armenia, Professor Murphy urged the World Court to find jurisdiction in a case that, among other things, concerns the flight in 2023 of more than 100,000 ethnic Armenians (including some 30,000 children) from their ancestral homeland in Nagorno-Karabakh.

“While Azerbaijan is seeking to argue that its conduct should be judged solely in accordance with rules relating to armed conflict, its conduct equally may be judged under rules concerning racial discrimination, over which the Court has jurisdiction,” said Professor Murphy. He noted that the Court’s jurisdiction arises from the ratification by both countries of the 1965 International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination.

A video of Professor Murphy’s argument may be found at here (bottom video, from time 1:00 to 1:28) and further information on the case may be found here.