First place memorial by the Siberian Federal University at the 2020 Russian National Championship of the Philip C. Jessup International Law Moot Court Competition

The Russian National Championship of the Philip C. Jessup International Law Moot Court Competition was held in Moscow from January 30 to February 2, 2020. The team of the Siberian Federal University was represented by Anastasia Burnakina, Svetlana Fomina, Alexandra Kostareva, Ekaterina Kalinina with V. V. Tereshkova, team coach, Ph.D. Eventually, Siberian Federal University took 1st place memorial and 10th place in the overall rating of participants.

The competition consists of two parts: preparing memorials and presenting it through oral rounds. Therefore, each team participating in the competition must prepare on a specific topic one applicant and one respondent memorial. The 2020 Jessup problem was named as a «case concerning the Helian Hyacinth» (State of Adawa v. Republic of Rasasa). The case challenged teams to address the legal issues surrounding treaty succession, fully autonomous weapons systems, government ministers accused of war crimes, and the potentially conflicting jurisdiction of the ICJ and the WTO.

The team has done a deep research and analysis in order to be the best. They considered whether the custom of succession was formed during the collapse of the allied states; whether is it possible to use autonomous weapon systems that are not under human control in an internal armed conflict; whether a WTO member can impose tariffs, guided by its national interests, and who determines these national interests. The case also required from participants to decide what is more important: to guarantee diplomatic immunity and develop international relations or to promote international justice, and execute an arrest warrant issued by the International Criminal Court. Furthermore, there were also procedural issues: does the ICJ have jurisdiction when the case is already being considered in the WTO?

In the oral rounds, the SibFU team entered the top ten among more than 30 teams of the leading Russian universities (MGIMO, HSE, Moscow State University, St. Petersburg State University, TSU and others). Team coach V. V. Tereshkova congratulated the team and expressed gratitude for their enthusiasm, efficiency and team spirit. Theywere and they arethebest.