Young Penalists Converge on Siracusa for the Institute’s Specialization Course on International Criminal Law



The 2019 Specialization Course in International Criminal Law for Young Penalists on ‘Human Rights and Criminal Justice’ was held in Siracusa from June 2 until June 10, 2019.

Organized by The Siracusa International Institute for Criminal Justice and Human Rights, the course was sponsored by the International Association of Penal Law (AIDP – France), the University of Palermo Department of Law (Italy), the Irish Centre for Human Rights, National University of Ireland (Galway, Ireland), the Middlesex University Department of Law (London, UK), the Canadian Partnership for International Justice (Québec, Canada) and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada.


The Specialization Course was attended by 59 participants from all over the world, from Argentina to South Korea, from New Zealand to Syria. English was the official language of the course. These individuals are recent law graduates, practitioners, academics or students, currently pursuing higher education or careers in the fields of international criminal law and international relations. Thirty-three different countries, as well as twenty-six different Universities, were represented among the participants involved in the Specialization Course. The course was taught and attended by eleven distinguished faculty members.

The Specialization Course included all day lecture sessions as well as a Small Group Exercise and a Moot Court Competition. At the end of the Course, all the participants attended 14 working sessions for a total of 42 actual academic contact hours. The lectures involved the following topics:


  • Fair trial guarantees and rights of the defence;


  • Definitions of crimes and human rights;


  • Human rights, international criminal law and international humanitarian law: defining the relationship;


  • Cinema and International Justice: The Nuremberg Trial;


  • Rights and victims;


  • Equality, non-discrimination and criminal justice (including sexual and gender-based violence);


  • Punishment, detention and human rights;


  • Transitional justice and restorative justice;


  • Juvenile justice.




During the moot court competition, the participants were divided into teams of three. The moot court competition culminated with a final round, which involved the top three teams from the preliminary rounds. The oral arguments took place before a panel of 3 faculty member judges. Moot court competition awards were given to the winning team:


Mr. Ahmed Tony (Egypt)

Ms. Lisa Urban (Germany)

Mr. Domenico Vallario (Italy)


and to the two best oralists:


Ms. Lisa Urban (Germany)

Ms. Lilya Belfer (Russia)


At the conclusion of the Specialization Course, there was an awards ceremony. Every participant in the Specialization Course received a certificate of attendance to the course.

Click here for the all pictures of the closing ceremony