Five Cambodian law students were selected to participate in mock hearings in Washington this month that simulated cases at the International Court of Justice.
The five students were all selected from the Royal University of Law and Science Economics: Prom Savada, Theng Tith Maria, Tan Tepi Kanika, Pea Vanchhay, and Tan Keat Tech.
Magaret Ryan, a teacher at the Royal University of Law and Science Economics in Phnom Penh, was team advisor, coaching the team in basic principles of international law.
The team partook in the Philip C. Jessup International Moot Court competition at the Capital Hilton Hotel in Washington, from March 21 to March 27.
This year’s competition covered the lawfulness of measures taken by countries to protect their economic resources.
The program “is an advocacy competition for law students,” student Tan Keat Tech told VOA Khmer. “The International Court of Justice… is the primary judicial organ of the United Nations. Each law school with a law-related degree program may select one Jessup team to represent the school in the competition.”
More than 120 Jessup teams from 76 countries competed in the international rounds of the competition, Savada Prom said.
“Teams of law students compete against one another through the presentation of oral and written pleadings to address timely issues of public international law in the context of a hypothetical legal dispute between nations,” Savada Prom said.
Pleadings were evaluated by judges based upon advocacy skills and knowledge of international law, Tan Tepi Kanika said, adding there are three judges for her team.
The team learned other things, as well.
“In a week-long educational and cultural exchange, attending matches, receptions, panels, workshops and networking events, I had an opportunity to meet law professors from the great law schools of the world [and] meet international law students from 76 countries,” Theng Tith Maria said. “My team experienced the organizing of conferences, the editing of journals and magazines, and the promoting of an international law curriculum.”