International Court of Justice


Cite as

Judge : Alexandre Nicolae

Topic : Cyprus v Turkey, the situation concerning the aftermath of the 1974 intervention

            This case calls for the Court to answer the following questions.

1. Of the international liability of Turkey following its military action and its consequences

Art 2 of the Articles on Responsibility of States for Internationally Wrongful Acts (ARSIWA), reflecting customary international law[1], provides that an international wrongful act consists of an action or omission (a) attributable to a State under International law and which (2) constitutes a breach of an international obligation of said State.[2]

As such, the August 1974 Turkish intervention in Cyprus, recognized by Turkey and thus attributable to Turkey, was not agreed to by the UN Security Council, nor was it done according to the procedure set forth in the 1960 Treaty of Guarantee (ToG).[3]

Thus, Turkey committed an internationally wrongful act (IWA) through its illegal invasion and the consequences to which they led, for which it must be held responsible.[4]

2. Of the link(s) between the 1974 greek coup, the ensuing turkish action, and liability of the latter

            The Greek authorities violated the non-intervention principle of Article 2(7) of the UN Charter by their coup attempt. Turkey, at first, intervened unilaterally yet legally under the 1960 ToG to preserve the status quo. Turkey’s second invasion in August 1974, however, occurred without escalation by the new Greek administration. In fact, the coupist government had already been removed from power and the situation had almost been brought back to normal.

Thus, while Turkey’s July military operation in Cyprus may not be considered an IWA, its August operation violated international law, rendering Turkey liable.

3. Of the relevance of the Treaty of Alliance and the Treaty of Guarantee

These treaties establish the legal context within which the events being presented before the Court took place. Furthermore, they are used as arguments by one of the Parties to the dispute. As a consequence, they must be considered a valid base upon which to build the Court’s legal argumen...

Subscribe to the Delegate's Club to fully unlock this Position Paper.

You can search and browse the Position Paper Database and read abstracts for each paper. To get access to the full database and the full content of all Position Papers, get a Delegate's Club subscription Learn More

Subscribe Now!