Chicago Journal of International Law


Cambodia and Thailand have been engaged in a territorial dispute over land in the vicinity of the temple of Preah Vihear, located near the countries' shared border, for over fifty years. This dispute has persisted in spite of a 1962 International Court of Justice (ICJ) judgment declaring the temple to be in Cambodia and a long history of negotiation and mediation attempts following the judgment. More recently, in July 2011, the IC, in connection with a request for intepretation of its 1962 judgment, indicated provisional measures creating a demilitarized Zone around the temple and steering both countries to cooperation with the help of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). The establishment of this demilitarized Zone, which included territory not subject to overlapping claims, was hotly contested among judges on the court, raising broader questions about the scope of the court's authority to issue provisional measures. Additionally, the court's inclusion of ASEAN as a body to facilitate resolution of the dispute fashioned the provisional measures into a channel for integrated dispute resolution, pairing adjudication with mediation. This Comment explores the lessons these two features of the ICJ's order teach us about the court's provisional measure authority and use of that authority to effectuate dispute resolution.