WCL's 2013 ICC team. From left, Naida Henao, Bethanie Haynes, and Michelle Flash.
International Criminal and Humanitarian Law Competitions
The War Crimes Research Office (WCRO) is seeking students (2L, 3L, or LL.M.) to represent the Washington College of Law in international criminal law and humanitarian law (IHL) competitions: the Jean-Pictet and Clara Barton IHL Competitions and the Pace/ICLN International Criminal Court Moot.
Unlike a traditional moot court competition, the Jean-Pictet Competition consists of a week-long series of simulated diplomatic negotiations and other exercises focused on IHL and other areas of public international law. The competition provides an excellent opportunity for students to immerse themselves in the study and practice these areas of the law, and to hone skills vital to the field of international law, including negotiation, lobbying, and advocacy.
The competition is held in a different city each year over one week, and two concurrent competitions are held, one in English and one in French. One winning team from each group is selected to participate in the final round of the competition. This year’s competition will be held in Charlottesville, Virginia, from March 28-April 4, 2015. Selection for participation in the Jean-Pictet Competition is conducted not only by the WCRO but also by the organizers of the competition. Per Jean-Pictet rules, “In order to avoid any inequality between teams that may arise from the participation of extremely qualified or experienced participants, the [Concourse Jean-Pictet] may decide not to accept the participation of students over the age of thirty who have strong experience in law or in the field of humanitarian action.” Additionally, any person who has previously attended the competition is also ineligible. For more information about the competition, please visit www.concourspictet.org.
The Clara Barton International Humanitarian Law Competition is an experiential learning competition similar to the Jean Pictet Competition that is sponsored by the American Red Cross to introduce future attorneys to the practical challenges encountered by those who practice IHL during armed conflict. The Competition involves multiple rounds of hypothetical case studies in which team members take on a variety of professional roles and field assignments. Knowledge of IHL and international public law will be tested in this competition, in addition to the ability to present, advocate, and defend legal positions to various parties throughout the simulations. This year’s competition will be held in Chicago from March 14-17, 2015. 2L, 3L, and LL.M students are encouraged to apply. For more information, visit the website at http://www.redcross.org/rulesofwar/clara-barton-international-humanitarian-law-competition.
Students with experience in international humanitarian or criminal law are particularly encouraged to apply. Interested applicants should send us their names, year, resume, transcript (unofficial is fine), and a description of any experience with international criminal / humanitarian law, and a short response (500 words maximum) to the following questions:
Last week, at a school in northeastern Syria, 600 civilians took shelter to sleep in the building fearing ongoing attacks from the Syrian government or the Islamic State in Iraq Syria (ISIS), an extremist Sunni militant group. During the night, warplanes dropped missiles on the school, killing 50 civilians and wounding 100. Thirty rebel soldiers guarding the school were also killed in the attack. It is unclear whether the Syrian government or ISIS were behind the attack.
- Does international humanitarian law apply? Why or why not?
- If this situation constitutes an armed conflict, what is its character (international, non-international, internal)?
- If IHL does apply, have any violations potentially occurred?
Please email your application to firstname.lastname@example.org. The deadline for applications is Friday, September 19 at 5:00 pm. Select applicants will be contacted to present their answers to the above questions in an oral presentation.
In past years, the WCL has been represented by the following teams:
The 2012 Competition
Federico Barillas, Shubra Ohri, and Jeremy Kelley represented the Washington College of Law at the 2012 competition in Winterton, South Africa.
The 2011 Competition
Megan Chapman, Tracey Begley, and Elinor Stevenson represented the Washington College of Law at the 2011 competition in Najac, France.
The 2010 Competition
Kay Marshall, Jenny Norako, and Kavita Kapur represented the Washington College of Law at the 2010 competition in Orford, Canada.
The 2008 Competition
Peter Chapman, Abdul Omar, and Nicholas Reddy represented Washington College of Law at the 2008 competition during April 19-26 in Schwarzenburg, Switzerland,
The 2007 Competition
The 2007 competition was held in El Escorial, Spain, from April 14-21. Erin Louise Palmer, Robert Tanenbaum, and Ryan Vogel represented Washington College of Law.
WCL's 2006 Jean-Pictet team. From left, tutor Duncan Wilson, Katharine Brown, Christian De Vos, and Elizabeth "Ellee" Walker.
The 2006 Competition
The 2006 competition was held in Vrnjacka Banja, Serbia and Montenegro, from March 4-11. WCL students Katharine Brown, Christian De Vos, and Elizabeth “Ellee” Walker represented Washington College of Law. The team distinguished themselves, advancing to the semi-finals of the competition.
The 2005 Competition
The 2005 competition took place in Collonges-la-Rouge, France, from April 2-9. Jennifer Dorn, J.P. Henderson, and Kristen McGeeney represented Washington College of Law at the competition.
The Pace/ICLN ICC Moot Court Competition is a moot court competition held at Pace University School of Law in White Plains, New York based on a hypothetical criminal trial argued before the International Criminal Court. Unique to this competition is the fact that each team has the opportunity to write a brief and argue their case from one of three different perspectives: that of the Prosecutor, Defense Counsel and either a Victim or State Representative. Each team will then participate in three rounds of oral arguments with the opportunity of arguing from all three perspectives. The highest scored teams will advance to the finals in The Hague to compete against qualifying teams from other areas of the world. Pursuant to the rules this competition, “Students with any professional legal experience, which includes qualification as a lawyer, but excludes legal internships, are not eligible to enter the Competition. Students aged 32 and older at the time of the Competition are not eligible to participate. The Organization reserves the right to make exceptions to this rule upon written request.” For more information about the competition, please visit http://www.law.pace.edu/international-criminal-court-icc-moot-competition.
Use application instructions listed above (same as Jean-Pictet and Clara Barton) to apply.
For more information about the competition, please visit http://www.law.pace.edu/international-criminal-court-icc-moot-competition.
In past years, WCL has been represented by the following teams:
The 2012 Competition
The 2012 competition took place from February 10-12. WCL students Molly Hofsommer, Ivan Carpio, and Anna Taylor represented the Washington College of Law. Molly Hofsommer was awarded Third-Place Runner-Up for the Government Counsel Memorial.
The 2011 Competition
The 2011 competition took place from January 28-30. WCL students Justin Shore, Aileen Thomson, and Zsofia Young represented the Washington College of Law. Aileen Thomson was awarded 2nd Best Prosecution Memorial and the team reached the semi-finals.
The 2010 Competition
The 2010 competition took place from January 29-31. WCL students Megan Haskins, Safina Lakhani, and Tanvi Zaveri represented the Washington College of Law. The team was awarded second place for Best Victims' Participation Memorial.
The 2009 Competition
The 2009 competition was held from February 16-20. WCL students Jennifer Norako, Eric Leveridge and Kavita Kapur represented the Washington College of Law. Jennifer Norako placed third for Best Defense Memorial, and Kavita Kapur received third place for Best Prosecution Memorial.