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Legal status of Eastern Greenland (Norway v.

Denmark), PCIJ, Ser A/B (1933),

Фабула дела:
Восточная Гренландия была открыла в 900 г н. э. Эриком Рыжим,
исландским жителем норвежского происхождения. Он основал там два
поселения, которые фактически были независимы, однако исчезли к 16 веку.
В 17 веке Датский Король дарует монополию своим гражданам на
торговлю в Гренландии и называет жителей острова “своими гражданами”.
Позже, к гербу Дании был прибавлен медведь как эмблема Гренландии.
Следует отметить, что иностранные государства не оспаривали претензии
Дании на Гренландию.
Хотя на территории Гренландии и не существовало поселений, воды,
омывающие остров, активно использовались для китобоев.
В 18 веке Король Дании издает ряд указов, регламентирующих статус
Гренландии, понимая под этим названием весь остров.
14 января 1814, после войны со Швецией и союзниками, Дания была
вынужденна подписать Кильский мирный договор, согласно которому уступала
часть территории Норвегии, за исключением Гренландии.
10 октября 1894 министр Дании известил министров иностранных дел
Норвегии и Швеции о создании торговых станций (поселений) на территориях
Восточной и Западной Гренландии.
Также на протяжении 19 начала 20 веков Норвегия осуществляла
деятельность по установке станции для торговли, охоты и ловли рыбы в
Восточной Гренладии, на что Дания выразила протест. В ходе переговоров
между правительствами государств, Дания не возражала о праве норвежцев
ловить рыбу на Восточном побережье, однако требовала уступить суверенитет
над территорией. Норвегия, в свою очередь, считала Восточную Гренландию
terra nullius.
10 июля 1931 года Норвегия провозгласила оккупацию территорию
Восточной Гренландии.

Требования сторон:
The Danish Government:
"the promulgation of the declaration of occupation above mentioned and any steps
taken in this connection by the Nonvegian Government constitute a violation of the
existing legal situation and are accordingly unlawful and invalid".
The Norwegian Government:
"Denmark has no sovereignty over Eirik Raudes Land; Norway has acquired the
sovereignty over Eirik Raudes Land; The Danish Government should bear the costs
incurred by the Norwegian Government in this case".
Danish title to sovereignty over Greenland:
“It must be borne in mind, however, that as the critical date is July 10th, 1931, it is
not necessary that sovereignty over Greenland should have existed throughout the
period during which the Danish Government maintains that it was in being. Even if
the material submitted to the Court might be thought insufficient to establish the
existence of that sovereignty during the earlier periods, this would not exclude a
finding that it is sufficient to establish a valid title in the period immediately
preceding the occupation”.
“One of the peculiar features of the present case is that up to 1931 there was no claim
by any Power other than Denmark to the sovereignty over Greenland. Indeed, up till
1921, no Power disputed the Danish claim to sovereignty”
“No other Power was putting forward any claim to territorial sovereignty in
Greenland, and in the absence of any competing claim the King's pretensions to be
the sovereign of Greenland subsisted.”.
“The importance of these treaties is that they show a willingness on the part of the
States with which Denmark has contracted to admit her right to exclude Greenland.
To some of these treaties, Norway has herself been a Party, and these must be dealt
with later because they are relied on by Denmark as constituting binding admissions
by Norway that Greenland is subject to Danish sovereignty. For the purpose of the
present argument, the importance of these conventions, with whatever States they
have been concluded, is due to the support which they lend to the Danish argument
that Denmark possesses sovereignty over Greenland as a whole”.
“In view of the above facts, when taken in conjunction with the legislation she had
enacted applicable to Greenland generally, the numerous treaties in which Denmark,
with the concurrence of the other contracting Party, provided for the non-application
of the treaty to Greenland in general, and the absence of al1 claim to sovereignty over
Greenland by any other Power, Denmark must be regarded as having displayed
during this period of 1814 to 1915 her authority over the uncolonized part of the
country to a degree sufficient to confer a valid title to the sovereignty”.
“..there can be no ground for holding that, by the attitude which the Danish
Government adopted, it admitted that it possessed no sovereignty over the
uncolonized part of Greenland, nor for holding that it is estopped from claiming, as it
claims in the present case, that Denmark possesses an old established sovereignty
over all Greenland”.
Criteria for effective occupation:
“..it may be well to state that a claim to sovereignty based not upon some particular
act or title...must be shown to exist: the intention and will to act as sovereign, and
some actual exercise or display of such authority”.
“Legislation is one of the most obvious forms of the exercise of sovereign power, and
it is clear that the operation of these enactments was not restricted to the limits of the
colonies. It therefore follows that the sovereign right in virtue of which the
enactments were issued cannot have been restricted to the limits of the colonies”.
“These treaties may also be regarded as demonstrating sufficiently Denmark's will
and intention to exercise sovereignty over Greenland.There remains the question
whether during this period, i.e. 1814 to 1915, she exercised authority in the
uncolonized area sufficient to give her a valid claim to sovereignty therein. The result
of al1 the documents connected with the grant of the concession is to show that, on
the one side, it was granted upon the footing that the King of Denmark was in a
position to grant a valid monopoly on the East coast and that his sovereign rights
entitled him to do so, and, on the other, that the concessionnaires in England regarded
the grant of a monopoly as essential to the success of their projects and had no doubt
as to the validity of the rights conferred.”
“The concessions granted for the erection of telegraph lines and the legislation fixing
the limits of territorial waters in 1905 are also manifestations of the exercise of
sovereign authority”.
“These acts, coupled with the activities of the Danish hunting expeditions which were
supported by the Danish Government, the increase in the number of scientific
expeditions engaged in mapping and exploring the country with the authorization and
encouragement of the Government, even though the expeditions may have been
organized by nonofficial institutions, the occasions on which the Godthaab, a vessel
belonging to the State and placed at one time under the command of a naval officer,
was sent to the East coast on inspection duty, the issue of permits by the Danish
authorities, under regulations issued in 1930, to perçons visiting the eastern coast of
Greenland, show to a sufficient extent-even when separated from the history of the
preceding periods-the two elements necessary to establish a valid title to sovereignty,
namely : the intention and will to exercise such sovereignty and the manifestation of
State activity”.

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