Judgments of the International Court of Justice
For the reasons given, it may be contended that the practice referred to is not strictly consistent with the terms of the existing rule, in the sense that it tends to inhibit a respondent in the exercise of a seemingly absolute right available under the strict terms of the rule to file a preliminary objection before the filing of the Memorial. But, however arguable that might be, the possibility of a different interpretation of the rule could not be wholly excluded, and of course the competence to interpret the Rules lay with the Court. It is general experience that formal rules of procedure — at any rate where no conflict with an overriding constituent instrument is involved (a caveat to which I attach importance in this field) — develop through the way in which they are interpreted and applied by the court concerned as evidenced by its practice.
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