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Law students reach moot final

Posted on 11/05/2018

George Collecott and Norah Alsemari at the 2018 European Human Rights Moot Court Competition.

The Dickson Poon School of Law continued its successful mooting campaign this year as its team reached the final of the European Human Rights Moot Court Competition in Strasbourg. The team, made up of George Collecott (4th year LLB with European Legal Studies) and Norah Alsemari (3rd year LLB in Politics, Philosophy & Law) finished runners-up to IE Madrid, having beaten Cambridge University in the semi-finals.

In addition, George was also the recipient of the prize for Best Orator in the final rounds and receives an internship at the EU/European Court of Human Rights Office in Brussels.

George described the competition and getting to plead in the Grand Chamber as an “unforgettable experience”, highlighting the complexity of the issues the moot raised: “The case concerned whether a state can force a child to be vaccinated in the face of religious parental objection. It addressed wide-ranging issues from religious discrimination, bodily integrity, how the Convention takes into account the child’s best interests, and an incidental question about judicial impartiality.”

The result is also an especially notable achievement for Norah who was competing in her first competitive moot.

The team received coaching and guidance from Professor Robert Wintemute, Professor of Human Rights Law at The Dickson Poon School of Law. Professor Wintemute joined the School in 1991 after practising as an Associate in the Bankruptcy Department at Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy LLP in New York, 1982-87.

Professor Wintemute said:  "We are very proud of our team and absolutely thrilled by their success. They placed second out of 101 teams from across Europe.  This was only the second time we have entered the competition, and the first time our team has been selected for the oral rounds in Strasbourg. Even though most teams had four members, our team made the final.”

The team also received support from Dr Emily Hudson, Director of Mooting, and Philippa White LLB, a Dickson Poon alumna and former competitor and champion of the Baker & McKenzie Moot.

The competition is organised by the European Law Students Association (ELSA) with the support of the Council of Europe. Further details on the competition and case can be found here.

To learn more about mooting at The Dickson Poon School of Law, search our Professional Skills & Employability web pages.

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