TESTIMONIALS FROM JUDGES
The European Moot Court Competition brings together top law students from around Europe to debate important issues of international human rights law in the Palace of Justice in Strasbourg, the home of the European Court of Human Rights. I had the privilege of chairing the Jury in the Grand Finals in 2015 and it was a great honour and a pleasure. I was struck by the immense ability and dedication of the participants and their passion for the issues that were debated. It is a comfort to know that new generations of competent lawyers are interested in pursuing a career in the field of human rights as this is a precondition for the effective protection and implementation of fundamental rights and freedoms. The Moot Court is a valuable experience for all those law students that are interested in furthering their careers in this field.
Róbert Ragnar Spanó
President of the European Court of Human Rights
It was a considerable honour for me to preside the 2016 Fourth Edition of the ELSA European Human Rights Moot Court in Strasbourg. Over the years this competition has acquired a high reputation and much prestige.(...)I have enormous admiration for all participants who over many months thoroughly prepared for this big event. They have gained so much in so many respects: a deep knowledge of European human rights and its procedures; how to plead in court both as an applicant and as a respondent; and not least how to cooperate as a team.
Former Judge and Section President at the European Court of Human Rights
TESTIMONIALS FROM PARTICIPANTS
The European Human Rights Moot Court Competition (EHRMCC) is a unique and amazing experience where both organizational and academic aspects are carried out at the highest level and the most importantly – it allows you to plead in the European Court of Human Rights and Council of Europe on the most pressing issues of European Human Rights. Last year, I took part in the EHRMCC 7th Edition as a participant from Georgia. I and my team had a long history before we got to the finals, we won the national round organized by ELSA Georgia and the Ministry of Justice of Georgia. As the winning team, we were qualified to compete in international rounds, and submitted written memorials for the applicant and respondent, based on the results we finally got into best 20 teams of final oral rounds in Strasbourg. From my experience, having different stages of the competition and the chance to overcome the challenges of them are quite exciting. As we were the only team who had extra national round to qualify for international rounds last year, it motivated us and was a stepping stone in the process of strengthening teamwork. This year is unprecedented as we provide mandatory regional rounds in three different locations and give amazing platforms for participating teams to gain experience and establish contacts with qualified judges and experts of human rights for their career interests in HRL. This is not just a competition, rather a combination of excellently organized activities. Besides the final oral rounds, participants are engaged in different activities during competition days. They have opportunities to attend the reception of permanent representatives of different countries to the Council of Europe, chances to participate in the study visits in the Council of Europe Headquarters and European Court of Human Rights and attend case author’s conference for more detailed analysis of the case problem. The EHRMCC is definitely the once in a lifetime experience, but what I want to highlight is the fact that all the participants and contributors to this competition become part of the ELSA network which dedicates itself to build “A world in which there is respect for human dignity and cultural diversity``. You feel the inspiration of this motto during the whole competition and exactly that point motivated me to apply for ELSA international team for 2019/2020 term and devote myself to become a member of the organising team of EHRCMCC 8th edition this year. I wish all the teams participating in the competition success and passion for human rights.
Final Oral Round participant, 7th edition
I had always wanted to participate in a Moot Court and when I learned that ELSA was organizing the EHRMCC I was determined to take part in it. My home university in Austria had a focus on Business and Economics, however, this curiously even increased my ambition to specialize in the field of Human Rights. I assembled a team of three like-minded friends and together we handed in our written submissions. For practicing purposes, we went to the pre-rounds in London and Odessa where we mainly had a lot of fun but also learned a great deal about mooting. We were thrilled when we heard that we had qualified for the Final Oral Round in Strasbourg alongside 19 other teams from Council of Europe member states. What made this Moot Court such a unique challenge was the complete immersion in a specific Human Rights issue and the opportunity to test one’s knowledge against legal experts and other participants. Participating in the EHRMCC has without a doubt been the most interesting, exciting and rewarding experience in my entire academic curriculum.
Semi Finalist of the Final Oral Round, 7th edition
To this competition, I do owe a lot! It is people, stories, friendships, fear and courage. It is a long-lasting opportunity for your dreams to keep on coming true. Every single bit of nerve was worth it beyond belief for me! The EHRMCC in its 7th edition was a remarkable eye-opening experience. It taught me to embrace risk, boost confidence and build resilience to what may come next. At first, there were small additions to what later became a pivotal moment in my personal development, namely the Grand Final and the Best Orator Prize. I had the most dedicated coaches one could ever wish for! Together with my dear co-counsel/co-agent, Sofia Bayadsi, we received unconditional support by them at any moment during our preparation for the competition. Substantively, it lasted for a full nine months. Our work on the case for the 7th EHRMCC was preceded by intensive summer training, including a broad general overview of the ECHR Articles and the ECtHR’s respective case law. This proved to be a great contribution to our understanding of the ECHR and the fundamental rights enshrined in it once we started the real-deal work on the case itself. Sleepless nights, jugs of coffee, multiple drafts, and countless late-hour trainings at university – it was all worth it for this one final pleading in the Grand Chamber of the European Court of Human Rights. To all of you who are doubtful or dubious about taking on a law competition such as the EHRMCC, do dare do it! The amounts of stress and insecurity experienced on a regular basis become so vague and irrelevant once you realise that it is all happening for real, once you are standing there at the Palais de l'Europe and the Court bravely delivering your arguments in front of panels and panels of judges and professionals in the field. In great addition, the ELSA team with its friendly spirits is always around taking good care of the participants. What comes after the competition then? The excitement may be soon replaced with a nudging feeling of a loss of purpose. But in the end, it is all about self-fulfilment and gratitude. For me, the EHRMCC led to my traineeship at the Council of Europe Liaison Office with the EU in Brussels, Belgium. This is yet another example that you can achieve whatever you truly desire and fight for. The traineeship presents you with diverse activities, including preparing an analysis on human rights, democracy and the rule of law-related issues, in a professional environment at the background of a highly international and multicultural city as Brussels. Do dare do it! It could be your reality sooner than expected!
Best Orator of the Grand Final, 7th edition