On 28 January the institute’s office in Cambodia was crowded with students and researchers on the occasion of the visit of Dr. Mark D. Kielsgard. Dr. Kielsgard, who is based at City University of Hong Kong where he teaches criminal law, international criminal law and human rights law courses, was in Cambodia as part of the ongoing cooperation between the Institute and the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC). On 27th January, Dr. Kielsgard held the 6th seminar in the joint RWI-ECCC seminar series for approximately 80 law students and staff of ECCC. The seminar series, which will offer in total 10 seminars is an important feature in the outreach activities of ECCC and is aimed at increasing the awareness and knowledge of international criminal law and human rights among law students and teachers/researchers in Cambodia.
Following previous practice and taking advantage of Dr. Kielsgard visit to Cambodia the Institute organised an informal session the following day for students and researchers. Dr. Kielsgard discussed the history and the definition of “Crimes against Humanity” and raised a number of interesting and challenging questions. More than 25 participants joined the discussion which took place at RWI’s office in Phnom Penh.
“It is very inspiring to see so many students and researchers visiting our office to listen to a lecture on a very relevant topic. It shows that there is a huge hunger among the next generation of leaders to learn more about human rights and international criminal law. I am happy the institute can offer a neutral platform for academic discussions. A lesson learned however is that we need to buy more chairs for the office”, said Andreas Ljungholm, Head of RWI’s office in Cambodia, after the students and researchers had left to go back to their Universities.