This year marks the 50th anniversary since Canadian law schools first started hosting the Philip C. Jessup International Law Moot Court Competition’s annual Canadian Division Qualifying Tournament in 1973. The University of Manitoba’s Faculty of Law has the distinctive honour of hosting this Canadian leg of the world’s largest moot court competition over the weekend of February 23 to 25, 2023 at The Fairmont Winnipeg Hotel.
Winning teams from the Canadian Division tournament go on to compete in the World Championship match (known as the White & Case Jessup International Rounds) being held April 9 – 15 at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Washington, DC. Participants at the Jessup Cup finals hail from roughly 700 law schools in 100 countries. Law students learn to prepare written and oral arguments on complex issues of public international law involving hypothetical cases before the International Court of Justice.
“We are delighted that Robson Hall is hosting the Canadian Rounds of the Jessup International Law Moot Court Competition,” said Dr. Gillian MacNeil, an assistant professor at the University of Manitoba’s Faculty of Law and co-cordinator of the competition with Dr. Gerard Kennedy. “We are particularly happy to be welcoming teams, advisors and guest judges from across Canada to compete in person for the first time in three years. We hope that many members of the Robson Hall community have a chance to come to the competition and observe some of the rounds.”
“A qualifying tournament of this size can’t happen without help from the legal community,” said Kennedy. “We are most thankful to our sponsors and volunteer judges and students,” he said, adding, “We especially would like to thank our student research assistant, Brandon Leverick, who has excelled in many aspects of organization, particularly regarding coordinating the volunteers. Volunteering for the competition is a great opportunity to interact with current law students and senior members of the legal profession and to witness oral advocacy first-hand.”
This year’s moot problem addresses several international legal questions, including the interpretation of a peace treaty, deadly attacks in allegedly occupied territory, unilateral economic sanctions, and the legal consequences of failing to dispose of hazardous waste properly.