The International Court of Justice has ruled against the United Kingdom in a case considered by many analysts to be one of the most important rulings by the UN Court in decades.
''The Court is of the opinion that, having regard to international law, the process of decolonization of Mauritius was not lawfully completed when that country acceded to independence in 1968, following the separation of the Chagos Archipelago'', said Judge Abdulqawi Ahmed Yusuf, President of the Court, who read the advisory opinion.
Importantly, the Hague based Court ruled that ''the United Kingdom is under an obligation to bring to an end to its administration of the Chagos Archipelago as rapidly as possible'', emphasizing that all Member States are under an obligation to cooperate with the United Nations in order to complete the decolonization of Mauritius.
Cyprus took part in the public hearings last September and argued that the British Bases in Cyprus constitute a similar case and that the UK is in violation of the UN charter.
Speaking today the Attorney General Costas Clerides said that "right now we have a clear legal decision that the status of the (British) Bases can only be seen as a remnant of colonialism and an illegal situation that can not continue''.
The lengthy ruling can be accessed here.