Leiden University wins the 2012 Kalshoven IHL Moot Competition
Every year, the Netherlands and Belgium Red Cross organize the Frits Kalshoven International Humanitarian Law Moot Court Competition, which brings together students from both Dutch and Belgian universities.
The format of this competition is different from other moot courts. The students prepare for an intense 5 day competition, where they are gathered together and given a series of lectures by professionals, have to do exciting role-plays, such as interviewing prisoners of war, or identifying legitimate military targets in the presence of actual military personnel. The week concludes with an actual moot court, where the students are given a mere 24 hours to prepare the case before arguing it before a series of military experts and professionals.
This year, the Competition took place from the 5th to the 9th of March 2012, in The Hague. Given the high number of participating universities, the moot court was scheduled over 2 days, with the semi-final on the 8th of March and the Final on the 9th of March, in the main lecture hall of the Peace Palace. The final Panel was composed of Brigade-General Jan Peter Spijk (Netherlands Ministry of Defence), Prof. Yves Sandoz (ICRC), and Judge Christine van den Wyngaert (International Criminal Court).
The Leiden team, composed of Daina Celma, Reka Hollos and Mathew Truscott and coached by Dov Jacobs, swept through the semi-finals and won the final against the University of Amsterdam. Moreover, Reka Hollos won the prize for best oralist. This achievement is particularly notable, given the fact that this year, most Dutch universities participated in the competition.