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AUAF Acknowledges the Achievements of AUAF Law Students in International Competitions

On April 5, 2016, In an event hosted by the Law Students’ Association (LSA) of the American University of Afghanistan (AUAF), the university celebrated the achievements of its law students in a number of major international competitions in the 2015-2016 academic year, including the Willem C. Vis International Commercial Arbitration Moot Competition in Hong Kong (Vis Moot), the VMSCL-WMO International Dispute Resolution Competition in India, and the MUN-ICJ Competition. In addition to these three competitions, AUAF law students are participating in the International Criminal Court Moot Court Competition (ICC Moot) in Netherlands in May 2016 and the Nuremberg Moot Court Competition in Germany in July 2016.

The event was attended by Dr. Mark A. English, President of the University, Mehdi Hakimi, Chair of Law Department, Haroon Mohtasem, Assistant Professor of Law, Professors from AUAF Law department, and AUAF staff and students.

Professor Mehdi Hakimi welcomed everyone to the event and encouraged students to take active part in extracurricular activities: "University life is not just about attending classes and preparing for the exams. There are many terrific opportunities such as prestigious international moot court competitions that will enhance your legal skills and enrich your professional and academic experiences. You should all take advantage of these wonderful learning opportunities.”

Professor Haroon Muhtasem, the first participant in the Jessup moot court competition from Afghanistan, and faculty adviser to AUAF’s ICC moot team that will compete in the Netherlands in May 2016, spoke about his experiences and underscored the importance of such international competitions for Afghan law students: "As a member of this [moot court competition] community since 2008, I can proudly say that in the long run AUAF will be one of the universities that will participate in all major international moot court competition with great success."

Dr. English in his speech said that whenever he travels, the first thing he talks about is AUAF law students because he is very proud of them: "Over time I came to realize that our law students are extraordinary." Dr. English congratulated the students for their achievements in various moot court competitions and emphasized his support for such programs.

Following the remarks by the faculty and administration, students crossed the stage one by one as their names were called, receiving their certificates from professor Mehdi Hakimi.

AUAF made history in the prestigious international Vis Moot competition earning unprecedented success and accolades for Afghanistan along the way. In the regional Middle-East Vis rounds held in Manama, Bahrain, AUAF produced excellent team and individual performances. AUAF placed 3rd out of 13 teams from 8 countries with law student Fayez Sahak landing the Best Oralist Prize. Following the successful regional outing, the AUAF team competed in the 13th Willem C. Vis International Commercial Arbitration Moot held March 6-13 in Hong Kong. Again, the AUAF team produced historic success: out of the 115 universities competing from all over the world, AUAF was among the top 34 teams. Moreover, AUAF was among the top 4 teams reaching the semi-finals of the Pan-Asian Division. AUAF law students produced stellar individual performances as well: Sirat Khalid Haidari was ranked 11th out of the 220 oralists who competed in Hong Kong. This was the first time an Afghan team had such success in any prestigious international moot court competition. The Vis community and tournament organizers praised the unprecedented performance by AUAF as “one of the most extraordinary achievements in the history of the Vis moot”. Moreover, in the VMSCL-WMO International Dispute Resolution Competition in India, AUAF students were awarded the Spirit of the Competition prize.