Originally Published in Asbarez, January 26, 2022

International lawyer Karnig Kerkonian will share his experiences through a presentation titled “Armenia v. Azerbaijan in the International Court of Justice: The Recent Case Brought Under the International Convention Against All Forms of Racial Discrimination.” The presentation, which will be held on Thursday, February 17 at 7 p.m., is part of the Spring 2022 Lecture Series of California State University of Fresno’s Armenian Studies Program and is co-sponsored by the Society for Armenian Studies.

On September 16, 2021, the International Court of Justice announced that Armenia had started court proceedings against Azerbaijan. Armenia accused Azerbaijan of racial discrimination in violation of the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (ICERD). The lawsuit followed the 44-day war fought between the two states last year. Armenia accuses Azerbaijan of discriminating against ethnic Armenians. It asserts that “Anti-Armenian hate is [Azerbaijani] State policy” and has led to “mass killings, torture and other abuse” of ethnic Armenians. In its court application, Armenia recorded the violent persecution of Armenians throughout the 20th century.

International lawyer Karnig Kerkonian, who is a member of the Armenian delegation to the ICJ in the case against Azerbaijan, will discuss the ramifications of the case.

Kerkonian is a seasoned international lawyer and experienced litigator. He currently leads the international and federal practice groups at Kerkonian Dajani LLP, focusing on complex litigation matters, Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act litigation, the Alien Tort Claims Act, and commercial sanctions regime matters.

Kerkonian holds an A.B. magna cum laude in Government from Harvard University and two law degrees—a J.D. from the University of Chicago where he served on the Law Review as well as a post-doctoral Diploma in Public International Law from Cambridge University, England where he studied under James R. Crawford, later a Judge of the International Court of Justice. Kerkonian presents regularly on matters of public international law, the International Court of Justice, the European Court of Human Rights, and the application of international law in U.S. courts. He is an adjunct professor of public international law at Artsakh State University.