International Committee of the Red Cross and students of the SibFU Law School: history of achievements

martens.JPGF.F. Martens Competition in International Humanitarian Law

The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) announced the holding of the annual F. F. Martens International Humanitarian Law Competition for law students at the beginning of the year. F. F. Martens is a Russian lawyer, diplomat and one of the founders of the Russian school of international law. Furthermore, he is the author of the «Martens Clause» which is a fundamental principle of international humanitarian law.


Since 1997, the competition has brought together not only students and university professors, but also international humanitarian law practitioners: ICRC employees, non-governmental organizations, government agencies. The competition is held in Russian in 2 stages. The first one is a preliminary where participants are required to represent written memorials. The second stage is held in Moscow in the form of a role-playing game, where the participants have to make decisions in various situations of a fictional armed conflict. The best team is expected to have deep knowledge of international humanitarian law and the ability to represent well-reasoned arguments. At the end, the jury awards the F. F. Martens Cup to the best team and the prize to the best speaker.

The team of the Law Faculty of Krasnoyarsk State University took part in the competition for the first time in 1997. Further, in 2016 and 2019, the students of the Law School of the Siberian Federal University repeated the experience of participating. In 2020, the team of the Siberian Federal University was represented by Svetlana Fomina, Alexandra Kostareva, Ekaterina Kalinina with V. V. Tereshkova, team coach, PhD. The team was selected among 50 universities and as one of the 18 best teams was invited to participate in the final stage of the competition. However, due to covid-19 situation, the organizers decided to cancel the competition in 2020.

kalinina.JPGEssay competition «2020 words in defense of cultural property»

The ICRC recently announced the results of the «2020 words for cultural property» the essay competition for all interested international humanitarian law scholars. The competition attracted the attention of a large number of applicants, since the problem of protecting cultural property during armed conflicts is of concern not only to the ICRC, but also to the global society. Any researcher, regardless of age, professional status, or country of residence, could become a participant, including, but not limited to students, graduate students, teachers and / or practitioners.

The organizers, determining the best essays, evaluated, first of all, the originality of the idea, deep knowledge of international humanitarian law and the quality of argumentation. The organizing committee included PhD professors from Russian universities, ICRC employees, legal advisers. Ultimately, Ekaterina Kalinina, a 1st year LL.M student took second place in the Best Student Work nomination.

Ekaterina Kalinina: «Honestly, I was pleasantly surprised when I found out that I won a prize. International humanitarian law is one of the areas of my science interests, therefore it is the great pleasure for me that my work was evaluated by highly-qualified professionals in this area. In the essay, I analyzed the issue of the destruction of cultural property and the prosecution of those responsible for the crimes committed. This issue has not been studied properly, and I hope that in the future, I can contribute to its development!».