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Internship Programme

The Internship Programme offers professionals, graduate students, and undergraduate students who are in their final stages of education the possibility to enhance their professional training in the unique environment of one of the two branches of the Mechanism.

documentsThe Internship Programme is open to those candidates who have an educational background in a number of areas, including law, archives and records management, journalism, translation and interpretation, and information technology. In addition to participating in the day-to-day activities, interns are invited to attend lectures and other activities that have particular relevance to the work of the Mechanism.

The Mechanism has two branches: one in Arusha, United Republic of Tanzania, which covers functions inherited from the ICTR, Arusha Branch, and one in The Hague, the Netherlands, which covers functions inherited from the ICTY, The Hague Branch. The Arusha Branch additionally has a satellite field office located in Kigali, Rwanda ("Kigali Office").

The Internship Programme assigns interns to each of the three constituent Organs of the Mechanism at each branch: the Office of the President and Chambers, the Office of the Prosecutor and Registry.

Current Vacancies

Intern – Legal Affairs (President’s Office) (Arusha and The Hague)
See full description of this vacancy in Inspira. See also below: Internships in Context.

Intern – Legal Affairs (Chambers) (Arusha and The Hague) - See also below: Internships in Context.

Intern - Legal Affairs (Office of the Prosecutor, Trial Division, The Hague)
See full description of this vacancy in Inspira.

Intern - Legal Affairs (Office of the Prosecutor, Appeals and Immediate Office, The Hague)
See full description of this vacancy in Inspira.

Intern - Information Management (Mechanism Archives and Records Section, Temporary Job Opening)
See full description of this vacancy in Inspira.

Intern - Information Management (Mechanism Archives and Records Section, Arusha, Temporary Job Opening)
See full description of this vacancy in Inspira.

Intern - Information Management (Mechanism Library Arusha, Temporary Job Opening)
See full description of this vacancy in Inspira.

Intern – Legal Affairs (Court Support Service Section, Registry, The Hague)
See full description of this vacancy in Inspira. See also below: Internships in Context.

Programme Guidelines

The Mechanism will define the number and nature of internships on a continuous basis according to its needs and possibilities. As a consequence, the selection and recruitment procedure continues on an ongoing basis.

Duration: Internships will generally range from a minimum of three months to a maximum of six months. In exceptional circumstances, internships of a longer or shorter duration may be possible.

Timeline for Application: Applicants are advised to submit their applications approximately six months prior to their proposed starting date.

Eligibility Criteria:

  • A majority of the internship positions available are of a legal nature. Applicants for a legal internship must have a university degree or be in the final stage of their undergraduate studies. If the applicant has already completed a four-year undergraduate university degree before commencing graduate legal studies, he or she must have completed at least one year of graduate legal studies by the time the internship commences.
  • Preference is given to law graduates who are acquainted with one or more of the following disciplines: international criminal law, public international law, international humanitarian law, human rights law, criminal law, and criminology.
  • Applicants applying for an archives and records management internship must be enrolled in, or have completed, a relevant degree programme. Applicants may indicate a preference for working with physical, digital, or audiovisual archives and records.
  • Applicants applying for other non-legal internships must have post-secondary education or training relevant for their desired focus (e.g., journalism, translation and interpretation, information technology, engineering, logistics, or human resources management).
  • Applicants must be proficient in English and/or French, both written and oral. Knowledge of other languages – particularly Kinyarwanda or Swahili (if applying to the Arusha branch) or Bosnian/Croatian/Serbian (if applying to the Hague branch) – is an asset.
  • There is no age restriction for applicants.

Application Procedures

If you wish to apply for an internship with either Branch or Organ of the Mechanism, you must apply directly to that Branch or Organ, according to the instructions provided below. If you are interested in applying to both Branches, you must submit a separate application for each. You must indicate which Organ or Organs you wish to apply for. Details about the type of work expected during an internship in one of the Organs of the Mechanism is provided below.

Application Form – Mechanism Internship Programme

Arusha Branch
IRMCT Internship Office
P.O. Box 6016
Arusha, Tanzania
mict-internshipsarusha [at] un.org

Chambers email:
MICTChambers-internship [at] un.org

President’s Office:
MICTPresidentsoffice-internship [at] un.org

The Hague Branch
IRMCT Internship Office
P.O. Box 13888 2501 EW
The Hague, The Netherlands

Chambers email:
MICTChambers-internship [at] un.org

President’s Office:
MICTPresidentsoffice-internship [at] un.org

Office of the Prosecutor:
otpinternshipprogram [at] un.org

Required documentation: Applicants must submit the following documents in one email or envelope:

  • Completed application form (Part I);
  • Cover letter/letter of intent stating the reasons for applying;
  • Two letters of reference/recommendation (instructions in Part II);
  • Copies of university/law studies transcripts (including courses taken and grades received); and
  • For legal internships: a writing sample of up to ten (10) pages (preferably in a field relevant to the work of the Mechanism).

Applications that are not submitted in accordance with the requirements above will be regarded as incomplete and will not be considered. The Mechanism will not remind applicants to submit missing documents; all necessary documents must be included in the application package, include letters of recommendation. Please note that the Mechanism is unable to return any documentation included in the application.

Terms and Conditions of the Mechanism's Internship Programme

  1. The Mechanism is not able to provide participants in the Internship Programme with remuneration, nor is it possible to provide any reimbursement for any expenses incurred during the internship. Accordingly, applicants must have the necessary resources or other financial support for the duration of the internship for which they have been selected.
  2. Interns are not considered in any respect as officials or staff members of the United Nations, and thus are not accorded privileges and immunities extended by the Host Country. The United Nations accepts no responsibility for costs arising from accidents and/or illness incurred during an internship. Consequently, interns are responsible for securing adequate medical insurance coverage.
  3. Interns are bound by the same duties and obligations as staff members. Information to which an intern has access in the course of the internship must not be divulged. Interns must not publish any written work, which contains information obtained during the internship, without prior explicit authorisation from the Registrar. In this connection, each prospective intern must sign the Acceptance and Undertaking Form prior to undertaking an internship.
  4. There is no expectancy of employment by the United Nations at the end of the internship. Interns may not apply for professional level vacancies carrying international recruitment status in the UN Secretariat for a period of six months immediately following the end of their internship, pursuant to ST/AI/2000/9, section 4.3, as amended by ST/AI/2005/11.
  5. Interns must provide written notice to their supervisor(s) should illness or other unforeseen circumstances prevent them from completing the internship.
  6. On completion of the Internship Programme, interns are required to complete a substantive report on their assignments. This will be included in their files and will be forwarded, upon request, to the sponsoring institution, government body or private organisation.
  7. Acquiring the necessary visa and travel documents are the overall responsibility of the selected candidate. However, the Mechanism Internship Office at the relevant Branch will endeavour to provide information and supporting documents as required.

Internships in Context

Office of the President: The President is the institutional head of the Mechanism and fulfils functions both in Arusha and The Hague. The President is responsible for the overall execution of the institution’s mandate, for representing the Mechanism before the UN Security Council and the UN General Assembly, for coordinating the work of Chambers, and for appointing Judges to hear cases as required. The President of the Mechanism is a member of the Appeals Chamber and presides over its proceedings.

In the President’s Office, interns provide legal support with respect to a wide range of mandated functions, including by conducting independent legal research, analyzing laws and policies, drafting and editing orders and decisions, and advising on press and policy matters. Interns may also observe hearings and deliberations, attend meetings of the President with interlocutors inside and outside the Mechanism, assist in the preparation of reports to the UN Security Council and UN General Assembly, and prepare drafts of speeches.

Candidates applying for an internship should possess strong academic credentials, demonstrated research, analytical and drafting skills and have an interest in the areas of criminal law, public international law, international criminal law, international humanitarian law, or human rights law. English and French are the working languages of the Mechanism. Fluency in oral and written English or French is required.

The application should include all of the following documents:

  1. A completed application form;
  2. Two (2) letters of recommendation;
  3. Copies of university/law studies transcripts (including courses taken and grades received); and
  4. A sample of the applicant’s written work preferably in a field relevant to the work of the Mechanism and not longer than ten (10) pages.

Applications can be submitted via Inspira (full description of this vacancy in Inspira) or via email (MICTPresidentsoffice%1Einternships [at] un.org).

If you have any questions about the internship programme in the President's Office please email MICTPresidentsoffice-internship [at] un.org ">MICTPresidentsoffice-internship [at] un.org

Chambers: Chambers is the judicial organ of the Mechanism. It is composed of a full-time President and 24 other independent Judges who are called from the roster of Judges, as needed, to perform the judicial work of the Mechanism. The Chambers Legal Support Section provides legal support to the Judges of the Mechanism in all aspects of their judicial activity.

Interns participate fully in the day-to-day activities of Chambers by working and interacting with Judges, legal officers, and other court staff. Chambers interns, for instance, engage in legal research, prepare memoranda, assist in the drafting of other documents such as decisions and orders, and may assist Judges during hearings in court. In addition to participating in the day-to-day activities of the Chambers, interns are invited to attend lectures and other activities that have particular relevance to the work of the Mechanism.

Candidates applying for an internship should possess strong academic credentials, demonstrated research, analytical, and drafting skills and have an interest in the areas of criminal law, public international law, international criminal law, international humanitarian law, or human rights law. English and French are the working languages of the Mechanism. Fluency in oral and written English or French is required.

The application should include all of the following documents:

  1. A completed application form;
  2. Two (2) letters of recommendation;
  3. Copies of university/law studies transcripts (including courses taken and grades received); and
  4. A sample of the applicant’s written work preferably in a field relevant to the work of the Mechanism and not longer than ten (10) pages.

If you have any questions about the internship programme in Chambers please email MICTPresidentsoffice%1Einternships [at] un.org 

Office of the Prosecutor: The Office of the Prosecutor (OTP) is responsible for the investigation and prosecution of persons under Article 1 of the Statute of the Mechanism. This includes the expeditious completion of trial and appeal proceedings as well as review proceedings and other post-conviction litigation related to persons convicted by the ICTY and ICTR. The OTP’s mandate also focuses on providing assistance to national authorities investigating war crimes within their jurisdictions. The OTP has branches in The Hague, Netherlands and Arusha, Tanzania. Interns will be assigned to one of the sections within the OTP, but may also be assigned work from other sections, depending on the needs of the Office. Interns in all sections will also have the opportunity to participate in team meetings, observe court proceedings (if in session), and attend workshops and lectures provided by experienced prosecutors.

  • Trial Section: In the Trial Section, duties of legal interns may include assisting trial attorneys with preparing for examinations of witnesses, researching and drafting parts of motions or final briefs, and classifying and preparing evidence. Interns may also conduct in-depth research and analysis of comparative and international criminal law issues.  
  • Appeals Section: In the Appeals Section, legal interns may assist OTP appeals counsel in conducting legal and factual research and drafting memoranda on issues of international humanitarian law and international and comparative criminal law and procedure, finalizing appellate filings, and preparing for appeal hearings.  
  • Immediate Office of the Prosecutor: In the Immediate Office of the Prosecutor, interns assist with a broad range of projects, including by drafting speeches and reports, developing capacity building initiatives, and conducting research for legacy projects.
  • Core Team: Within the “Core team” of the OTP, interns can work on a range of issues related to the ongoing functions of the Mechanism, including witness protection issues, review proceedings and other post-conviction litigation, fugitive tracking, assistance to national authorities, and monitoring cases referred to national jurisdictions.

Law graduates, law students in their final year of undergraduate legal studies, and second and third year law students who have completed a four-year undergraduate degree before commencing legal studies are invited to apply for internships of three to six months. Applications are only accepted pursuant to active postings through the UN recruitment portal, Inspira: inspira.un.org. Each posting will indicate whether the internship will take place in The Hague or Arusha branch of the OTP.

Registry: The Registrar heads the Registry, which is responsible for the Mechanism’s administration, including maintenance of the archives. The Registry assists the Offices of the President and the Prosecutor in the performance of their responsibilities through the provision of support services. The Registry also maintains contact with United Nations Headquarters, the host countries and other member states regarding general cooperation with and assistance to the Mechanism, including enforcement of sentences.

Legal interns attached to the Registry may be responsible for comprehensive, legal research on matters of public international law, private international law, humanitarian law, criminal law, drafting of legal documents and correspondence, assisting in negotiations and specific projects. Interns will assist with provision of legal advice on administrative legal matters and on the internal regulations and rules of the United Nations.

Interns attached to the Mechanism Archives and Records Section (MARS) in the Registry may work with physical, digital and/or audiovisual records. Interns will have the opportunity to work with archives staff while gaining experience with a variety of tasks, including, but not limited to: describing holdings; performing basic preservation measures; preparing finding aids and indexes; creating educational and promotional materials; managing records and completing other tasks related to the archival profession. Interns will be able to participate in a wide range of stimulating and engaging tasks that will contribute to the preservation and access of the Tribunals invaluable archives for present and future generations. MARS employs a variety of technological and innovative approaches to its archival work and interns will be participating in professionally and personally satisfying roles while carrying out their assigned tasks.

There is also the opportunity to undertake an internship with the Legal Library in Arusha, Tanzania. Interns will have the opportunity to work with library staff while gaining experience with tasks including, but not limited to: library reference work, acquisitions and processing. Interns are also involved in various ad-hoc projects related to library databases and bibliographic publications carried out by the Mechanism's Legal Library.

Non-legal internship positions in the Registry may also exist for those candidates with an educational background in journalism, translation and interpretation, or information technology.