Organization of the Month June | CIIL

The Chinese Initiative on International Law (CIIL) is an independent NGO with a mandate of promoting a better understanding of international law, particularly international criminal law and justice, in the Greater China Region. Their targeted audience include Chinese academia and students, Chinese media and Chinese governmental officials. It believes that ‘any international justice without Chinese participation will not be a true global effort’. The work of CIIL mainly consists of international justice monitoring, international law education, international advocacy and public advocacy.

Last week, CIIL officially opened its The Hague office in the multi-tenanted block dedicated to NGO’s. As a number of crucial international tribunals have their seat in The Hague, the new entity will allow CIIL to expand its voice and to better cover events in areas where relatively smaller amounts of online resources are available. “We share our experiences and information mainly through our existing monitoring network on social media” says the Office Director of CIIL The Hague Office, Ms Yingqing Gong.

 FHV-20150612_70133Image: welcoming speech by the Executive Director of CIIL, Michael Liu at the Office Launch Function.

Considering the status of The Hague as the International City of Peace and Justice and capital of the international law world, CIIL believes that the presence of an office in The Hague will be of great benefit for realizing its mandate. The new office is intended to function as a bridge between The Hague and the Greater China Region. CIIL aims to actively cooperate with various parties by setting up a working level dialogue. Coordination of projects between the two is essential to achieve its mandate” according to Yingqing Gong, Office Director of CIIL The Hague.

CIIL facilitates projects within the topic of International Peace & Justice – as initiated by the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Municipality of The Hague – and aims to lead these projects to China in 2015. Furthermore, CIIL coordinates educational tours for Chinese students in the field of international law.

One of CIIL’s first achievements in The Hague is the coordination of the International Moot Court Competition: a debate court competition for international students with a focus on ICC proceedings and international criminal law. The competition is held in four official languages of the ICC (namely English, Russian, Spanish, and Chinese). Each debate is organized by entities native to these languages and region. The final round of the ICC Chinese Moot this year hosted in the ICC Courtroom in The Hague.

FHV-20150612_70107Image: speed date with Chinese calligraphy at the Office Launch Function, 12 June 2015.

During the final week of the competition, students visited several international judicial institutions such as the International Court of Justice and the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, and connected with experts from all facets of the public international law discipline. To provide students with a cultural perspective, this year’s itinerary also included visits to non-judicial arms promulgating international justice such as the Anne Frank House in Amsterdam. CIIL looks forward to operating from its new office and will continue to provoke dialogue on International Law.

FHV-20150612_70197Image: keynote speakers at the Office Launch Function. From left to right: Judge Daqun LIU from the ICTY, Ms Anne-Marie Hitipeuw from The Hague Municipality, Michael Liu from CIIL, Judge Daniel Nsereko from the STL and Judge Chung from the ICC.

The WestHolland Foreign Investment Agency
“The WFIA and Bureau Internationale Zaken (BIZ) of the City of The Hague have been very supportive and helpful during the establishment of CIIL’s Hague office. CIIL encountered a number of difficulties, especially at the beginning, e.g. finding reliable notaries and tax advisors. WFIA helped CIIL with these matters and is still rendering its support, for which CIIL is very grateful”, says Gong.

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