On 15 -19 July 2019, in Palais des Nations, 11th Nelson Mandela World Human Rights Moot Court Competition was organized in Geneva, Switzerland. The Competition is presented by the Centre for Human Rights based at the Faculty of Law, University of Pretoria, in partnership with the Academy on Human Rights, Washington College of Law, American University and the United Nations Human Rights Council Branch (HRCB) at the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR).
The best 10 teams from each UN region were invited to participate in the pre-final, quarter-final, semi-final and final rounds of the Competition in Geneva. Teams had to argue the two sides of the hypothetical case, representing, alternatively, both the Applicant and the Respondent before a ‘bench’ of human rights experts.
During the opening ceremony, which was held on Monday 15 July 2019, participants had the opportunity of listening to and interacting with diplomats at the UN, some of who include:
- H.E. Ambassador Coly Seck President United Nations Human Rights Council
- Mr Eric Tistounet Officer-in Chief Human Rights Council Mechanism Division, Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights
- Prof Claudia Martin Co-Director Academy on Human Rights and Humanitarian Law, American University Washington College of Law
- Dr Nkatha Murungi Assistant Director Centre for Human Rights, University of Pretoria
The eight best teams proceeded to the quarter final rounds, which was presided over by judges from international courts and tribunals. Starting in 2019, the Competition will be held in not only in English, French but also in Spanish.
The competition, which is referred to as the Olympic Games of Human Rights held preliminary rounds between 16 – 17 July 2018. The quarter-finals took place on the 18 July 2019 during which students proved their mettle before international human rights law experts, with the hopes of securing a spot in the Semi-Finals. The finals took place on the 19 July and was presided by Judge Iulia Motoc, Judge Raul Pangalangan, Justice Albie Sachs, Prof Veronica Gomez, Professor Claudio Grossman, Professor Manfred Nowak, Dr Nilufer Oral.
The 2019 Nelson Mandela World Human Rights Moot Court Competition also hosted for the first time the Annual Nelson Mandela World Human Rights Moot Court Competition Annual Lecture.
- Centre for Human Rights, University of Pretoria
- Academy on Human Rights and Humanitarian Law, American University, Washington College of Law
- United Nations Human Rights Council Branch (HRCB) at the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR).
With the financial support of
- European Union through the Global Campus of Human Rights
- Mission Permanente de la Suisse auprès des Nations Unies à Genève
- South African Permanent Mission Geneva
- The Regional Office for Southern Africa (ROSA) of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights