February 23, 2012 — Coral Gables — Former Child Soldier to Speak at National Security and Armed Conflict Law Review Symposium Tchicaya Missamou, former Congolese child soldier, U.S. Marine, bestselling author, and founder of the Hope for Congo Foundation, will speak at the University of Miami’s Storer Auditorium on Friday, March 2 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. He will be joined by Washington & Lee University School of Law Professor Mark Drumbl and Saby Ghoshray, president of the Institute for Interdisciplinary Studies. The title of the symposium is “Child Soldiers and International Law.” Three short lectures will be followed by a question-and-answer period and book signings.
Born and raised in Congo-Brazzaville, Missamou lived in relative peace with his 15 brothers and sisters until civil war swept the country in 1992. At age 13, he was yanked into the brutal life of a child soldier, witnessing unspeakable atrocities. After years of violence and tragedy, Missamou resolved to save lives instead of taking them, and used his military connections to get white diplomats out of the country. Subsequently, Missamou’s family was brutalized, and in 1997 he was forced to flee his country.
Drumbl, who is also director of Washington & Lee’s Transnational Law Institute, has recently written a book, Reimagining Child Soldiers in International Law and Policy, to be published by Oxford University Press. Drumbl’s expertise includes public international law, global environmental governance, international criminal law, post conflict justice, transnational legal process, and contracts. Currently he is examining the challenges of reintegrating child soldiers who have been implicated in acts of mass atrocity.
Ghoshray is an author and expert on the interface between domestic jurisprudence and international law, juvenile criminal law, military tribunals, and constitutional law.
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