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HSE Students Won Russian Jessup

On February 7, 2016, the national finals of the Philip C. Jessup International Law Moot Court Competition, one of the world’s most prestigious law competitions for students, took place in Moscow. The HSE Faculty of Law team took first place.

The HSE team at the competition included Polina Klipova (1st-year master’s student), who was awarded the title of the best speaker in Russia at the competition, Anastasia Rozeeva (4th-year undergraduate), who was one of the ten best speakers in the country, Vasily Bakumenko (4th-year undergraduate), Darya Kotova (3rd-year undergraduate), and Vladimir Kostsov (2nd-year undergraduate). The team was trained by Emil Shagiakhmetov, 2014 graduate of the Faculty of Law.

The Philip C. Jessup Competition is one of the world’s largest competitions for law students and has been held in Russia since 2002. Over 500 teams from 80 countries take part in it. The competition is a simulation of a fictional dispute between countries before the UN International Court of Justice, where students argue in English, present documents and prepare speeches on issues of international public law. This year 43 Russian universities participated in the event.

In the final round of the national stage, HSE team met a team from MGIMO. They had to solve a case related to the legitimacy of using mass surveillance software and the international legal consequences of cyberattacks. After a two-year hearing, the judges of the competition – Michael Wood, member of the International Law Commission,Marko Milanovic, Professor at the University of Nottingham and Vice-President of the European Society of International Law (ESIL), and Başak Çalı, Professor at Koç University in Istanbul and Secretary General of ESIL – delivered an unanimous verdict in favour of the HSE team.

‘Patience, persistence and a coordinated team are probably the key elements in such a competition, since without them, it’s impossible to get any results’, said Vasily Bakumenko, ‘The Jessup offers a lot of opportunities and chances to meet new people; it opens up a whole new world, but most importantly, it gives you a feeling that you are part of something bigger’.

A special prize for contribution to the development of the Jessup competition was awarded to Ksenia Kapranova, graduate of HSE in Nizhny Novgorod, who trained the university teams for three years. In 2015 she died of cancer, and from 2016, following the decision of the Jessup national administration, the prize for contribution to the development of the competition will be named in honour of Ksenia Kapranova.

HSE students will now go on to represent Russia as national champions in the international rounds of the Philip C. Jessup Competition in Washington, D.C., in March and April 2016.

Anastasia Belyakova, press centre of the Faculty of Law

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