Not very many Dutch nobles built a hunting cabin in the thirteenth century with the lofty hope that it would someday become a center for international peace and justice. Count Floris IV didn’t think about that when he settled down near a pond in the South Holland province sometime around 1230.
But today, the United Nations, the International Court of Justice (which is located in the Peace Palace), the Permanent Court of Arbitration, Europol, and over 150 other international organizations are located in the Netherlands’ largest city on the North Sea: The Hague.
|The Peace Palace, March 2006|
On this day in history in 1900, following the world’s first Peace Conference in 1899, the international arbitration court was established at The Hague by a decree ratified by the Senate of the Netherlands.
Why do we call it The Hague? Because of Count Floris IV’s shrubbery. Today, the Count’s hedge (Den Haag) is the seat of the Dutch government, the third largest city in the country, and a place that stands for justice and peace for the entire world.