UNB Hosts Jessup Moot Qualifying Rounds

Author: Matt Poirier

Posted on Nov 20, 2017

Category: Faculty , Students

In the fictional Odasarra Region, on the sparkling shores of the Kumatqesh Ocean, an international catastrophe is looming. The People’s Democratic Republic of Anduchenca has captured a Rukarukan autonomous submarine within their territorial waters. While the international community attempts to deal with this conflict, a news report reveals that Anduchenca, run by a military dictatorship since a 1967 coup d’état, has developed a nuclear submarine. Acting under authorization by a United Nations resolution, the Rukarukan navy locates and captures the Ibra, Ancuchenca’s nuclear submarine.

It is under these circumstances that parties will face each other in the Philip C. Jessup International Law Moot Court Competition, where students play both sides of the conflict, representing the fictional nations at a simulacrum of the International Court of Justice. This year, UNB is proud to host the Canadian qualifying round taking place this the winter, from February 22–24 at the Fredericton Convention Centre. Teams from law schools across Canada will compete for a spot at the Jessup finals in Washington, DC.

The oldest and largest moot court competition in the world, the Jessup is quite unique in that it focuses on public international law—the type of law that is practiced at the UN’s International Court of Justice. Whereas domestic law generally deals with individual people in a country, public international law deals with disputes between the nations themselves. The compromis (the international law word for the details of the case) for each year’s competition is painstakingly created from scratch by experts at the International Law Students Association, but will often make reference to contemporary events. In this year’s case it is not hard to see parallels with current affairs, particularly the tense situation on the Korean peninsula. Even though the events are fictional, the moot is serious business.

There are many volunteer opportunities for anybody who wants to get involved. Even if you can’t commit the time, the preliminary rounds are open to the public and will be interesting whether you’ve personally argued a case before or simply seen it on a television show.

For more information on the Jessup Moot, visit the International Law Students Association website.

To volunteer to help with this year’s competition or if you have any questions about it, contact Michael Marin.