Fifty years after the League of Nations handed over the mandate for the former German colony of South-West Africa to the South African government in Pretoria, through Britain's King George Fifth, the protracted legal dispute over who should administer the territory continues.
SV Rat burrowing in sand (2 shots)
LV Giraffe and zebras
CV Animals approach water-hole (2 shots)
AV Ovamuland village
AV Waterfall and rivers (2 shots)
AV City of Windhoek (the capital)
SV More shanties
SV Woman rummages in refuse heap
CV Woman and children
GV & LV Old German fort converted into hotel
SV German plaque
GV Lutheran Church
AV Waterfall and river
MV Zebras surround water-hole
CV Elephant at water's edge (2 shots)
SV Bushman shoots arrow (2 shots)
SV & LV Zebra herd scatters (2 shots)
CV LV & SV Bushmen dance to celebrate the kill
GV & LV Traffic in Windhoek
SV Pedestrians along street
GTV Students dance across square, tilt up to skyline
RV U.N. Observers enter house
SV Natives look on
GV & MV Officials walk through township (2 shots)
6982/66 (THE HAGUE)
CV Sign, International Court of Justice
SV Judges enter court
SV PAN, judges seated
SV & CV INT. workers in foundry
GV Workers leave foundry
CV Small native boy
LV Mob of sheep rounded-up
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Background: Fifty years after the League of Nations handed over the mandate for the former German colony of South-West Africa to the South African government in Pretoria, through Britain's King George Fifth, the protracted legal dispute over who should administer the territory continues.
South-West Africa,...318,000 square miles of mainly desolate country,...extends from the Altantic coast of Southern Africa and is bordered on the north by Angola, inland by Botswana, and to the south by South Africa. Into its area Austria, Belgium, Denmark, England, Greece, Hungary, the Netherlands, and Portugal could all be fitted with ease. One-sixth of its total population of 650,000 is white. The remainder represent chiefly the Ovambo, Damara, and Herero tribes. The capital, Windhoek, is a contrast between the old and the new. Modern commercial buildings stand out starkly amid what remains of German architecture.
Five years after taking up the mandate, the South African government gave the territory a constitution, and later, rights of representation, but it also imposed its security and apartheid laws in 1966. Since its inception, the United Nations has almost annually made recommendations that, as a former League of Nations mandate, South-West Africa should be placed under United Nations' Trusteeship, and expected regular reports from the South African government. These did not come. As the South African security and apartheid laws were being brought into force in the territory the United Nations rapidly set up a committee to explore ways in which South Africa could be replaced as administrative authority.
In 1950 the International Court of Justice declared that South Africa was under no legal obligation to place the land under United Nations' Trusteeship. However, it also ruled that with the dissolution of the League of Nations, the United Nations had been vested with supervisory powers over the mandate. Similar advisory opinions from the Court followed in 1955 and 1956. In 1960 Ethiopia and Liberia alleged South African contraventions of its mandate. Final judgement was given six years later by the International Court which, in a highly controversial decision, invalidated the claims. The United Nations General Assembly remained firm in its legal fight over administration of South-West Africa, and on 12th June 1968, renamed the territory Namibia.
Since then the South African government has refused to allow the United Nations Committee on Namibia to enter the territory and continues to run it virtually as its fifth province. Nevertheless, the United Nations has again forced an "advisory" hearing of the International Court of Justice this week, in view of its continued concern. The Court will be asked to deliberate on the legal consequences of South Africa's continued presence in Namibia. The South African government's 5-man legal team is understood (in reports from Capetown) to be doubtful of securing another ruling in its favour, and is pinning its hopes on alleged United Nations procedural irregularities. Whatever the outcome, the inhabitants of the disputed country have shown clear evidence of wanting independence, and some....including guerrilla members of the South-West African People's Organisation......have given their lives in pursuit of this cause.