Following the request of Palestine as a Party State to the Status of the International Criminal Court, the Prosecutor decided to start a preliminary investigation into the situation of Palestine. The preliminary investigation resulted in a request from the Prosecutor to the Pre-Trial Chamber I for clarification of the Court’s jurisdiction in relation to the occupied territories of Palestine. Many significant issues concerning the status of Palestine as a State and its legal borders were raised during the preliminary investigation, both by the Prosecutor and during the examination of the Chamber. Although both the Prosecutor and the Chamber have approved that the Court has jurisdiction over the Palestinian territories, including those occupied by Israel, the prospect for the success of the trials by the Court depends on the cooperation of the international community as a whole and the State parties to the ICC Status.
For more than a decade, the states bordering the Eastern Mediterranean Sea have been in disagreement over the delineation of their maritime boundaries. The disagreements concern various parts of the region and create enormous political tension over energy-related activities. Ever since Egypt and the Greek Administration of Southern Cyprus (GASC) signed the very first delimitation agreement of the region, without securing Turkey’s involvement, Turkey has issued many official statements and carried out energy-related activities in the region. Based on the principle that maritime delimitation should be carried out to reach an equitable solution by taking all the relevant circumstances into account, Turkey has developed a comprehensive legal approach as to the maritime delimitation in the Eastern Mediterranean and even submitted a map to the UN to demonstrate Turkey’s claimed continental shelf and Exclusive Economic Zones (EEZ) areas. The details of this comprehensive approach should be examined, to identify both the claims of Turkey over the maritime borders and the related legal arguments.