The Election of Ambassador HORINOUCHI Hidehisa as a Member of the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (ITLOS)
(Statement by Foreign Minister HAYASHI Yoshimasa)
On June 15 (June 14 local time), the election of members of the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (ITLOS) was held at the Meeting of States Parties to the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) in New York. The Government of Japan highly welcomes the election of Japan’s candidate, Mr. HORINOUCHI Hidehisa, Ambassador for UNCLOS, from among the candidates for the Asia-Pacific Group.
As the rule of law at sea becomes ever more important, ITLOS is playing an even larger role in the peaceful settlement of maritime disputes. Japan highly appreciates ITLOS for making significant contributions in maintaining and developing the rule of law at sea, making timely and insightful decisions for the peaceful settlement of maritime disputes, in particular during the 18 years that Mr. YANAI Shunji has been serving as a member of ITLOS, including as its President. Following in the footsteps of Judge YANAI, Ambassador HORINOUCHI was elected as the third member of ITLOS from Japan. We recognize his election reflects the high esteem for Japan’s contributions in this field.
Japan believes that Ambassador HORINOUCHI will play an active role as a judge, and will continue to actively contribute to the maintenance and development of the free and open maritime order based on international law, in particular UNCLOS. Furthermore, we would like to once again express our deep respect and sincere gratitude to Judge YANAI for his tremendous contributions to ITLOS and to maintaining and developing the rule of law at sea during his tenure.
- The International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (ITLOS)
- ITLOS was established in accordance with the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), in 1996 in Hamburg, Germany, with the mandate of judicial settlement of disputes related to the interpretation and application of the Convention. The Tribunal is composed of 21 independent members. UNCLOS entered into effect in 1994 and currently has 167 State Parties and one region (EU). Japan ratified UNCLOS in 1996.
- To date, Japan has produced two members of ITLOS, Mr. YAMAMOTO Soji (from October 1, 1996, to September 30, 2005) and Mr. YANAI Shunji (from October 1, 2005, to September 30, 2023).
- C.V. of Ambassador HORINOUCHI
Born in 1957. Graduated from the University of Tokyo, Faculty of Law, and joined the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in 1980, where he served as Deputy Director-General (Intelligence and Analysis Service), Deputy Director-General (International Legal Affairs Bureau), Envoy and Minister at the Embassy in the People’s Republic of China, Consul-General in Los Angeles, Ambassador to Cambodia, Ambassador to the Netherlands, and currently Ambassador for UNCLOS.