Nawaf Salam, a judge at the International Court of Justice (ICJ) since February 6, 2018, was elected President of the ICJ on Tuesday for a three-year term.

In an initial comment after his election to head the International Court of Justice, Salam said that his election represents a great responsibility to achieve international  justice and promote international law.

“What comes to mind at this moment is my constant dream to see my city Beirut regain its title of  the ‘city of law’ and that the Lebanese succeed in establishing the rule of law and that justice reigns in Lebanon,” Salam said on his X account.

The ICJ is the principal judicial organ of the United Nations. It was established by the United Nations Charter in June 1945 and began its activities in April 1946.

The seat of the ICJ is at the Peace Palace in The Hague, Netherlands. Its mission is twofold: “to settle, in accordance with international law, legal disputes submitted to it by States, and to give advisory opinions on legal questions.”

The Court is composed of 15 judges elected for a nine-year term by the General Assembly and the Security Council of the United Nations.

Judge Salam was born in Beirut in 1953. He was the Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Lebanon to the UN in New York from July 2007 to December 2017. During his tenure at the UN, he chaired the Security Council in May 2010 and September 2011, among other engagements. He was also head of the Lebanese delegation to the Climate Change Summit in Paris in 2015 and a member of the Lebanese delegation to the Islamic Summit Conference in Dakar in 2008.

Judge Salam is a lawyer and member of the Beirut Bar. He has held several academic positions, including Head of the Department of Political Studies and Public Administration at the American University of Beirut and Research Associate at Harvard University. He is also the author of numerous publications and books on various aspects of international, constitutional and Islamic law. He holds a Ph.D. from the Institut d’Etudes Politiques de Paris, an LL.M. from Harvard University and a Ph.D. in History from Sorbonne University.

He was co-author of the draft law presented by the “Special Commission for the Electoral Law” to the Lebanese Government in June 2006.

Judge Salam is fluent in Arabic, French and English and has been awarded the French Legion of Honor in the rank of Officer.

Caretaker Prime Minister Najib Mikati congratulated him on his appointment as President of the ICJ.