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(MULTILATERAL GOVERNMENT) International court based in the Hague, the Netherlands; founded in 1889; oldest multilateral court. In some respects, a precursor to the International Court of Justice (also in the Hague--in the same building, the Peace Palace).

The PCA differs from the ICJ in that only national governments may be respondents in the ICJ (which operates like a civil court). The PCA settles disputes that may arise between a private party (such as RCA, in RCA vs. China-1935) and a national government, or between national governments. Parties submit to the PCA when the dispute is a nuisance to both, but relevant laws are uncertain.
The Permanent Court of Arbitration has a three-part organizational structure consisting of an Administrative Council that oversees its policies and budgets, a panel of independent potential arbitrators known as the Members of the Court, and its Secretariat, known as the International Bureau, headed by the Secretary-General.
by Primus Intra Pares July 19, 2010
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