GW Law School Fall 2003
A Magazine for Alumni and Friends

GW Law Briefs

International Update

Genocide in Sudan: The International Response

Jerry Fowler, staff director of the Committee of Conscience of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum and GW adjunct professor

Photo by Claire Duggan

“Genocide in Sudan: The International Response,” a panel that GW Law School’s International Law Society co-sponsored with the D.C. Bar, was held in the Jacob Burns Law Library in January. Discussion centered on the legal aspects of the ongoing political and humanitarian crisis in the Sudan. Questions posed included whether the tremendous loss of life constitutes genocide or other crimes under international law, as well as how the United States, United Nations, and nongovernmental organizations should respond to the crisis.

David Scheffer, visiting professor of law and former U.S. ambassador at large for war crimes, moderated the panel. Panelists included Jerry Fowler, staff director of the Committee of Conscience of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum and also a GW adjunct professor, and Omer Ismail, program director of Darfur Peace and Development.

“Before a standing-room only audience, seasoned experts on Darfur enlightened all of us about the harsh realities and legal issues relating to the atrocities there, and made the case for more effective responses by the U.S. government and the international community. I was particularly impressed that several government officials attended and joined the students with their questions,” Scheffer says.

Professor Martin Adelman; Malvinder Singh, president of Rambaxy Laboratories; Hon. Randall Rader, JD ’78; and Dr. Raj Davé, LLM ’03, discuss IP issues at an India Project conference in Mumbai.

The group included Ronald Krasnow, JD ’90; IP Advisory Board member and former head of the U.S. Patent and Tradmark Office Todd Dickinson; Judge Hugh Laddie, chief judge of the Patent Court of the United Kingdom; and Hon. Dr. Peter Meier-Beck, German Federal Court of Justice, Karlsruhe.

The India Project

Dr. Raj Davé, LLM ’03, has spearheaded the India Project, through which the Law School helps educate Indian judges, academics, and scientists on the importance of intellectual property rights. In January, the India Project organized its second trip to India in as many years. Conferences and meetings were held in Kolkata, New Delhi, and Mumbai. Some of the attendees also made a side-trip to Bangalore, the hub of Indian inventive activity. The trip’s timing was critical as India’s obligations under the WTO Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights came into effect Jan. 1. As Davé states: “Members of the India Project delegation made a great impact by discussing the benefits of a good patent system with many sectors of the Indian population. For all their help and hard work, the delegates deserve a big hand. My written words are not enough to thank the delegates.”


Ricardo Lombana, LLM ’01, deputy chief of the Mission for the Embassy of Panama, hosted GW Law’s International Law Society for a reception at the ambassador’s residence in March. Eduardo Nuñez, LLM ’01, of Mexico; Clarissa Surgeon, LLM ’05, from Panama; and 2005 JD graduates Melissa Leibman and Kelly Fry joined Dean Karamanian at the event. For Lombana, the evening was memorable as it gave him the chance to reminisce about the Law School and to have one of his classmates and close friends, Nuñez, with him for the evening.

Photo by Claire Duggan

Supreme Court Videoconference

U.S. Supreme Court Justices Sandra Day O’Connor and Stephen Breyer spoke with justices from the Indian Supreme Court via video conference at GW Law in December. The discussion focused on alternative dispute resolution. Federal Judge Clifford Wallace of the 9th Circuit and Federal Judge Fern Smith of the Northern District of California also participated in the video conference.



Iraqi Jessup Moot Court

Professor David Scheffer (standing, second from right) engaged in a lengthy discussion with members of the Iraqi Jessup Moot Court team on issues including war crimes and the trial of Saddam Hussein. JD student Ali Shaikley (back row, second from left), whose family is originally from Iraq, participated in the session and provided invaluable translation skills.

Biodiversity Panel

Photo by Claire Duggan

GW Law and the District of Columbia Bar’s Environment, Energy, and Natural Resources Section presented panel discussions on “The United States and the Convention on Biodiversity” in December. The event was held in the Jacob Burns Moot Court Room. The topics covered were “Biodiversity, the CBD, and the CBD-United States Relationship,” “Biotechnology, Genetic Resources, and Intellectual Property,” and “The CBD and Global Conservation.” Speakers and moderators included Hamdallah Zedan, executive secretary of the Convention on Biological Diversity; GW Law professor Dinah Shelton; Charles E. Di Leva, lead environmental law counsel of the World Bank; and Charlotte De Fontebert of the World Conservation Union.

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