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In May 2009, in co-operation with the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators Australia (CIArb), the International Law Committee staged the inaugural CIArb/YL International Arbitration Moot.

This co-operation will continue in 2011, with the third CIArb/YL International Arbitration Moot to be held on Saturday 10 September 2011 at the Australian International Disputes Centre.

Attracting participants from Perth and Brisbane, this event is a showcase of the appeal of arbitration amongst young lawyers and has cemented its place as a progressive and high quality competition.

This event is also a great opportunity to experience the real world of arbitration and network with some of the pre-eminent professionals in the field to discuss the recent changes to both the state and federal legislation on arbitration.

The Competition’s main prize for Best Orator, won last year by Derek Wong, is a place in the Diploma in International Commercial Arbitration Course. The course is run jointly by the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators Australia and the University of New South Wales. The prize is valued at over $7000!

Other prizes are awarded for ‘Winning Team’, ‘Best Written Submissions’ and ‘Spirit of the Arbitration Moot’. Prizes last year for these categories were kindly donated by The Federation Press, Oxford University Press and Cambridge University Press.

We welcome Young Lawyers (lawyers under the age of 36 or in their first five years of practice) and students from around the country to apply to compete in this unique competition.

Applications to compete are now open and will close on 18 July 2011. For more information on the event and details on how to apply, please click here.

Please contact the Chair of the International Law Committee at if you wish to find out more about our fantastic Moot.


The clinical execution of Osama Bin Laden in his redoubt in Pakistan has reminded us again of the many public policy issues related to terrorism. It was also in Abbottobad that the Bali bomber, Umar Patek, was arrested in January. It is now suggested he was on his way to see Bin Laden. Was he tortured, and did his interrogation lead the Americans to their quarry?

Is torture of any kind, including waterboarding, acceptable conduct by those who job it is to track down terrorists? How long is it reasonable to detain and interrogate suspected terrorists before bringing them to trial?  And is anti-terrorism part of a military campaign or an international law-enforcement effort? And, finally, what is the definition of a terrorist, and what does international law say about him or her?

Over the last two decades, and particularly since 9/11, terrorism has come to the fore as one of the most serious threats to international peace and security. 

The Australian Institute of International Affairs and the NSW Young Lawyers International Law Committee jointly invite you to discuss this important issue with three authorities:

Adjunct Professor Clive Williams MG, Centre for Policing, Intelligence and Counter Terrorism,MacquarieUniversity. Clive Williams has a career background as an officer in the Australian Intelligence Corps, which included a number of overseas intelligence appointments. After leaving the Army in 1981, he pursued a civilian career in Defence Intelligence, working mainly on transnational issues. He was a Chevening scholar at the War Studies Department, King’s College,London, in 1987. He has worked and lectured internationally on terrorism-related issues since 1980, and started running terrorism courses at the ANU in 1996. He left Defence in 2002, and has since run terrorism and national security-related Masters course electives at the ANU and a number of Australian and overseas universities. He became an Adjunct Professor at the Centre for Policing, Intelligence and Counter-Terrorism (PICT) atMacquarieUniversity in 2006. He also became a Visiting Professor at theSchool ofHuman and Social Sciences (HASS) of theUniversity ofNSW at the Australian Defence Force Academy (ADFA) in 2006. He is a member of the International Association of Bomb Technicians and Investigators (IABTI), the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP), the Australian Institute of Professional Intelligence Officers (AIPIO), and an Associate of the International Academy of Investigative Psychology (AIAIP).

Dr Christopher Michaelsen is a Senior Research Fellow at the UNSW Law Faculty. He teaches and specialises in public international law, human rights and international security. Prior to joining UNSW, he served as a Human Rights Officer (Anti-Terrorism) at the Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR) of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) in Warsaw, Poland. He has previously worked for the United Nations Department for Disarmament Affairs in New York City, and at the Strategic & Defence Studies Centre of the Australian National University in Canberra. He has served as a consultant for the Asian Law Group in Semarang, Indonesia, and for the Center for Global Counter-Terrorism Cooperation in New York City. Chris is a member of the Gilbert + Tobin Centre of Public Law and a member of the Australian Human Rights Centre.

Dr James Renwick is a Barrister practising at the Sydney Bar. He is a former Fulbright Scholar. Prior to coming to the NSW Bar he was a solicitor in bothprivate and government practice, with a particular emphasis on public law. Some notable terrorism related matters include: representingAustralia at the trial of David Hicks atGuantanamo Bay,Cuba in late 2004, and appearing for the Police and ASIO in a number of terrorism prosecutions. He pioneered the teaching of national security law in Australia, gave one of the keynote addresses on that topic to the Judicial Conference of Australia in 2005 and, in January 2008, devised, organised and spoke at a major conference on the conduct of terrorism trials, held in Washington DC, and undertook the same roles in 2010 in a conference on Jihadi recruitment. He is an Associate of the Sydney Centre for International Law, which is part of the faculty of Law within theUniversity ofSydney.

Robin Bowley (Seminar Moderator) is a former officer in the Royal Australian Navy and graduate of the Australian Defence Force Academy and Royal Australian Naval College. He is currently working as a solicitor for an Australian government regulatory authority and completing a PhD at theUniversity of Wollongong on maritime terrorism and international law. Formerly a council member of the AIIA; Robin is the current Stream Administrator for International Maritime and Aviation Law with the NSW Young Lawyers International Law Committee.

Date: Monday May 16, 2011

Time: Refreshments 6:00 pm; Presentation 6:30 pm – 7.30pm

Venue: The Glover Cottages, 124 Kent Street, Sydney (located adjacent to the Kent St Fire Station)

Cost: AIIA/YL members $15; Senior members / students $10; Visitors $20; Senior Visitors $15


2. Telephone acceptance to (02) 9247 8504 (if unattended leave a voicemail message)

3. Payment may be made at the door by cash/cheque/credit card

On Tuesday evening, the AIIA and Young Lawyers International Law Committee held their first joint event on the future of immigration and refugee law and policy in Australia. The event was a resounding success and was attended by more than 80 members of our respective organisations.

The discussion panel consisted of Sydney University professor, Mary Crock, whose specific research interests range from studies of the interaction between Parliament and the judiciary, to the legal rights of migrants and refugees. Her research and analysis of the various policies and laws enacted by the Australian Government exposed serious flaws in our approach to refugees and Mary’s passion added a dimension to the discussion that humanised the whole experience.

Mary was be followed by Kerry Murphy, a partner of D’Ambra Murphy Lawyers working on all aspects of migration law including administrative and judicial review. Kerry’s work has taken him to the many Detention Centres scattered throughout Australia and off-shore. Listening to some of his experiences and hearing about the hardship suffered in these camps was vital to appreciating the austerity of some of the immigration legislation passed in the last ten years.

Pouyan Afshar, the immediate past president of NSW Young Lawyers and an Associate at Baker & McKenzie, closed off the discussion with his account of the cultural and social elements that rarely gain a mention in these kinds of discussions. Drawing from his own experiences as a migration agent and working with refugees as an interpreter, Pouyan’s account of the economic, political and cultural dimensions of the debate regarding “illegal immigration” had a grounding affect that was the final ingredient required in such a discussion.

Immigration and refugee law in Australia has been thrown around the political landscape to emulate the same emotional reactions synonymous with crime and social welfare. This is not a political issue. As Mary states: “The number of refugees who come to Australia as asylum seekers – by plane or boat – is minute in world terms. The numbers are manageable. Most come because of prior connections with communities in Australia.” Australia has a legal, moral and ethical requirement to approach this issue as more than just a political one.

Discussions such as these are vital to understanding the real issues that face Australia regarding immigration and refugees and I’d like to thank our panellists for their insightful and grounded contribution to this debate.

If you would like to read more about this topic, please find below a selection of articles that deserve a read:

Hello all, and welcome to the newly restored Red Telephone blog. This site was originally set up in 2007 as the online headquarters and newsfeed of the International Law Committee. We have now regained access and have the opportunity to post opinion pieces and comments on international law.

On this site you’ll find up-to-the-minute news covering all aspects of international law, gathered and edited by our intrepid Committee members, as well as updates on the latest professional and social events and the work of the Committee itself.

Please feel free to contact me should you wish to make a contribution!

For those of you who are still reading the site – in which case I commend your exceptional demonstration of faith – you will notice some odd behaviour, changes in design and content over the next week while we transition to a new working model.

Please check back at the end of next week for the revamped content. Thanks.

Hello all, and welcome to the launch of The Red Telephone, the online headquarters and newsfeed of the International Law Committee of NSW Young Lawyers.

On this site you’ll find up-to-the-minute news covering all aspects of international law, gathered and edited by our intrepid Committee members, as well as updates on the latest professional and social events and the work of the Committee itself. It’s going to be our nerve center for lively discussion, debate, and networking with our professional peers worldwide.

We’re a young, dynamic and creative membership and we need a state-of-the-art tool for the job. This site is it. We’re in the infamous beta stage right now, so the site will go through a lot of changes in the near future, but bookmark it now and keep checking back.

About this site

THE RED TELEPHONE is the newsblog and discussion forum of the International Law Committee of NSW Young Lawyers, a division of the Law Society of New South Wales.

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