For the International Law Project students undertake a piece of practical legal work with an international focus. The exact nature of the work varies from year-to-year but usually covers international human rights law and / or international humanitarian law. It includes legal work to assist an international non-governmental organisation, a community, or a group of individuals. The work might include legal research, reviewing documentation, taking witness statements, or drafting a document to be submitted to an international forum such as a United Nations body.
Students are supervised by a practising lawyer and given training to support their work. Training includes the relevant area of international law, their duties and responsibilities as practising lawyers, the ethics of international legal work, and how to deal with additional aspects of the work such as stress and challenging materials.
22-23 International law projects
This year the students focused on the current situation in Ukraine and international humanitarian law, looking in particular at the deportation and transfer of protected persons. Examples of two reports are available to view below.
This report highlights the forcible transfer and deportation of Ukrainian children by Russia to ascertain State Practice. Focussing on what the international community are saying about the ‘re-education’ centres, fast-tracked adoptions, and the potential re-nationalising of Ukrainian children by Russian forces and their agents.
This report sets out allegations of the deportation and transfer of protected persons from areas occupied by the Russian Federation, in breach of international humanitarian law, during the course of the current armed conflict between Russia and Ukraine.
In 2020-21, students undertook research into the customary international law of the law of occupation, looking at countries as diverse as Azerbaijan, East Timor, Ukraine, and Western Sahara. Students undertook a piece of research work on state practice during the conflict in the former Yugoslavia with a leading firm of solicitors; looked into disclosure obligations in different jurisdictions in the context of protected sources for a large international NGO; and others looked at how a ‘community development fund’ could be established by the African Court of Human Rights in the case of Ogiek v Kenya, on behalf of an NGO working on the rights of indigenous peoples.