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"Legal Defense and Human Rights in Russia"

October 2, 2007

A talk with Robert Amsterdam, founding partner, Amsterdam & Peroff, legal defense counsel for Mikhail Khodorkovsky. Moderated by Thomas Ginsburg, Visiting Professor, University of Chicago Law School.

Robert R Amsterdam is a founding partner of Amsterdam & Peroff, a Toronto based international law firm with affiliated offices in Paris, Miami and Beijing. In practice since 1980, Mr. Amsterdam has extensive experience litigating and arbitrating corporate disputes in emerging markets, focusing on the areas of individual and corporate human rights. Mr. Amsterdam was retained by Mikhail Khodorkovsky in August, 2003 as part of the YUKOS-Group MENATEP defense team. Since then, he has worked with Russian human rights lawyers to prepare a White Paper on international human rights issues as they relate to the prosecution of Platon Lebedev, Alexei Pichugin and Mr. Khodorkovsky.

Since Mr. Khodorkovsky's arrest, Mr. Amsterdam has had extensive contacts with government officials, parliamentarians and human rights organizations in Western Europe, Canada and the United States on Mr. Khodorkovsky's behalf; he has also been interviewed by The New York Times, Financial Times, BBC, Globe and Mail, National Post, Le Monde and other major media. Last December, Mr. Amsterdam was the first non-Russian member of the defense team to be permitted into a bail hearing for Mr. Khodorkovsky.

From the World Beyond the Headlines Series and the Center for East European and Russian/Eurasian Studies.