Judge Hoffmann (South Africa) was elected by the members of the ITLOS as President and Judge Heidar (Iceland) as Vice-President on 2 October 2020, for the period 2020–2023. The election took place during the fiftieth administrative session of the Tribunal, which is taking place in a hybrid format, with fifteen judges present in the courtroom and six attending remotely. The election was held using a secure electronic voting system.
President Hoffmann has been a member of the Tribunal since 2005 and VicePresident Heidar since 2014. In accordance with the Statute of the Tribunal, the President is elected for a period of three years and may be re-elected. The President presides at all meetings of the Tribunal, directs its work and supervises its administration. The President represents the Tribunal in its relations with states and other entities and is required by the Statute of the Tribunal to reside permanently at the seat of the Tribunal in Hamburg.
The Vice-President assumes the functions of the President in the event of a vacancy in the presidency or of the inability of the President to exercise the functions of the presidency.