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BIICL Annual Conference

The Institute Annual Conference held on 16 June 2006 was an opportunity for BIICL to demonstrate its considerable research expertise in many fields to members of both the profession and academia. Approximately 250 people attended the event, held at the School of Oriental and African Studies and in the Institute itself, and many non-members joined the Institute as a result.

An excellent Keynote Address was given by the Rt Hon Sir Francis Jacobs KCMG QC on the future of the Constitutional Treaty for Europe and the European Court of Justice, introducing the Institute's European and Comparative Law Programme. This followed an introduction by the Institute's Chairman, the Rt Hon Lord Bingham of Cornhill KG, and the Institute Director, Professor Gillian Triggs.

The Plenary Session that followed saw issues currently being addressed by the Institute's research project on 'Evidence in International Courts and Tribunals', discussed in the light of the Bosnia- Herzegovina v Serbia and Montenegro Genocide case currently before the International Court of Justice. Sir Franklin Berman KCMG QC chaired a high calibre panel consisting of advocates from either side of the case: Professors Alain Pellet and Andreas Zimmermann, and Dr Chittharanjan Amerasinghe and Khawar Qureshi, both of whom also have considerable experience of international courts and tribunals. Differing points of view engendered several lively exchanges and the proliferation of questions following the session illustrated the interest of the audience in the subject.

The afternoon saw two sets of parallel sessions, the first with panels entitled 'Afghanistan - Fundamental Legal Issues'; 'Pressures for European Court Reform - Competition and Other Issues' and 'International and European Environmental Law', and the second focusing on 'Protection of Legitimate Expectations in International Trade and Investment Law' and 'Pitfalls in Comparative Law'.

The event also provided an excellent opportunity to launch two of the most recent publications by Institute staff: European Tort Law by Professor Cees van Dam, and International Law: Contemporary Principles and Practice, by Professor Gillian Triggs in a convivial manner over a drinks reception following the Conference.


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