Statement by Minister for Foreign Affairs on the Election of Judge Shunji Yanai, as President of the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (ITLOS)

October 2, 2011

  1. The Government of Japan welcomes the election of Judge Shunji Yanai, a Japanese Member of the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (ITLOS) , to the President of the Tribunal at the election carried out in a meeting of the ITLOS judges held in Hamburg, Germany, on Saturday, October 1.

  2. While the role of ITLOS in the peaceful settlement of maritime disputes as well as in the maintenance and development of the rule of law at sea is increasing, Judge Yanai, as the member of the Tribunal elected from Japan, has already made a great contribution to ITLOS for the last six years.  Japan believes that the election of Judge Yanai, as the first Japanese President of ITLOS, indicates high evaluation given to him from other members of the Tribunal, and a Japanese national assuming a post of the head of one of the most important international organizations is a significant contribution of Japan to the international community.

  3. The Government of Japan is determined to contribute to the activities of ITLOS, and to further promote the maintenance and development of the rule of law in matters relating to the oceans and sea. Japan expects that Judge Yanai will play an ever greater role as the President of the Tribunal, and is prepared to render all possible assistance to ITLOS.

  4. Taking into account Judge Yanai’s appointment as the President of ITLOS, now two Japanese nationals are presidents of international judicial institutions, namely,  International Court of Justice (ICJ), where Judge Hisashi Owada serves as the President, and ITLOS. The Government of Japan will make further efforts for promoting the rule of law in the international society.
    • (*The foregoing is a provisional translation. The date indicated above denotes the date of issue of the original press release in Japanese.)

Back to Index