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Geneva (Switzerland)

Purpose of the post

The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) works worldwide to provide humanitarian assistance to people affected by conflict and armed violence. We take action in response to emergencies and at the same time promote respect for international humanitarian law. We are an independent and neutral organization, and our mandate stems essentially from the Geneva Conventions of 1949. 

The ICRC is carrying out a project to update the commentaries on the four Geneva Conventions of 1949 and their two Additional Protocols of 1977. The Legal Division is seeking to hire a legal adviser to work as a part of the project team under the supervision of the head of the unit. The role will be to carry out research and draft texts for the new commentaries.

Main responsibilities and tasks

  • Carry out legal research on topics covered by the Fourth Geneva Convention and their Additional Protocols; the focus will be on research into the ICRC's archives, national and international case law, military manuals and doctrine in order to collect all legal information that is necessary to update the commentaries. This research will be used by the different internal and external lawyers writing the new commentaries; 
  • On the basis of the research carried out, prepare files for each article covered by the commentaries;
  • Consult and coordinate with the internal and external lawyers writing the new commentaries about the research and the draft commentaries;
  • Guide and supervise contributors to the updated commentaries; 
  • Draft updated commentaries on treaty provisions and edit other commentaries; 
  • Take an active part in the team coordination meetings to ensure consistency of form and content in drafting the commentaries; 
  • Take an active part in promoting the updated Commentaries; 
  • Carry out any other duties requested by the head of unit in relation to the project. 

Training and experience

  • Law degree combined with a doctorate in law or other post-graduate degrees, with a specialization in public international law;
  • Expertise in international humanitarian law, as well as a thorough knowledge of international human rights law and international criminal law;
  • Well-developed legal research and writing skills, demonstrated by publications in the field of public international law and international humanitarian law;
  • Excellent ability to analyse and summarize complex legal issues;
  • Excellent ability to write legal texts in a concise and clear manner and within tight deadlines;
  • Minimum 5 years of relevant professional experience;
  • Fluent level of English and very good knowledge of French.

Skills and qualifications

  • Rigour and clarity in researching and analysing legal issues and in drafting legal texts;
  • Openness to dialogue and good interpersonal skills;
  • Proven ability to work in a team;
  • Proven experience in project and time management would be an asset
  • Proven expertise in matters governed by the Fourth Geneva Convention would be an asset.

Additional information

  • Location:                      Geneva
  • Working rate:                90%
  • Length of assignment:  3 years, extendable
  • Starting date:                ASAP
  • Application deadline: Sunday, 27 January 2019
We do our best to provide you the most accurate info, but closing dates may be wrong on our site. Please check on the recruiting organization's page for the exact info. Candidates are responsible for complying with deadlines and are encouraged to submit applications well ahead.
Before applying, please make sure that you have read the requirements for the position and that you qualify.
Applications from non-qualifying applicants will most likely be discarded by the recruiting manager.

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  • Organization: ICRC - International Committee of the Red Cross
  • Location: Geneva (Switzerland)
  • Grade: Senior - Internationally recruited position - Senior level
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Human Rights
    • Legal - Broad
  • Closing Date: 2019-01-27

What does it mean?

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