Publish Date: 05.11.2019

Category: News from the University

In an extraordinary performance before the current judges of the International Court of Justice, the University of Ljubljana’s Faculty of Law team composed of students Katja Grünfeld and Iva Ramuš Cvetkovič, student Rok Kljajič as coach and mentor Assoc. Prof. Dr Vasilka Sancin won first place in the final of the international Manfred Lachs Space Law Moot Court Competition, held at the headquarters of the US Space Agency NASA in Washington D.C. in the USA. The University of Ljubljana’s Faculty of Law thereby became the world champion in international space law. 

In the world final, which was held as part of the 70th International Astronautical Congress, the winning teams from Asia, North America, Africa and Europe battled it out. In the final part the University of Ljubljana Law Faculty (UL PF) team competed against a team from the University of Calabar in Nigeria, and earned a convincing victory which brought them the title of both European and world champions. In the previous rounds of the competition the UL PF team beat all competitors and in the final of the European part they competed against the team from the University of Vienna Faculty of Law. Their victory in that round brought them the title of European champion.

The Manfred Lachs Space Law Moot Court Competition is a competition in space law and public international law held by the International Institute of Space Law and the European Centre for Space Law. The teams first compete in the regional rounds, which are split into Europe, Australia, Asia, America and Africa. Regional winners then compete in the world finals presided over by judges of the International Court of Justice. The best team is declared the overall world winner of the Manfred Lachs Moot Court Competition.

The competition is conceived as a simulation of a trial before the International Court of Justice and is composed of a written and an oral part. Each team must first prepare two written memorials, one for the applicant and one for the respondent. In the written submissions the teams present the legal arguments and facts supporting individual claims addressed to the International Court of Justice in relation to a hypothetical case. After submitting both memorials, the teams prepare for the oral arguments, which take place in a different country each year, and only the winning team is placed in the grand final where it will compete against the winners from the three other regions.