It consists of 15 judges elected by the General Assembly and Security Council voting separately. It is the principal judicial organ of the U.N.O. It sits at the Hague in Holland. The judges are elected for a term of 9 years. All questions are decided by a majority of the judges. The chief function of the Court is to make peaceful settlement of legal disputes between nations. The Court does not deal with political disputes; these are the charge of the Security Council.
It also gives advisory opinion on matter referred to it by the General Assembly or the Security Council. The Court is successor to the Permanent Court of International Justice, the judicial organ of the League of Nations. The judges of the Court represent the different legal systems of the world.
The judges, however, do not represent their states. They are appointed in their individual capacity because of their judicial eminence. All the same, they must be qualified to be appointed as a judge of the highest court of their country. The decisions of the Court are enforced by the Security Council. It may take steps it deems fit. Its decisions are binding on the parties. Even States that are not members of the U.N.O. may accede to the Charter of the Court. The Court has its own Charter.