Representatives of Serbia and the authors of the declaration of independence, the Provisional Institutions of Self-Government (PISG) of Kosovo, spoke during proceedings at the ICJ, which got under way on 1 December. Twenty-seven other United Nations Member States also addressed the proceedings.
In October 2008 the General Assembly adopted a resolution requesting the ICJ to give an advisory opinion on the legality of the move by the PISG of Kosovo, where ethnic Albanians outnumber ethnic Serbs and other minorities by about nine to one.
The ICJ, also known as the World Court, is the UN's principal judicial organ and is based in The Hague in the Netherlands. It is tasked with settling legal disputes between Member States and with giving advisory opinions on legal questions.