Job Opening

Posting Title: Senior Legal Officer (Collection and Analysis), P5
Department/Office: Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights
Duty Station: GENEVA
Posting Period: 09 October 2019 - 07 November 2019
Job Opening Number: 19-Legal Affairs-OHCHR-122616-R-Geneva (X)
Staffing Exercise N/A
United Nations Core Values: Integrity, Professionalism, Respect for Diversity
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Org. Setting and Reporting

This position is located within the International, Impartial and Independent Mechanism to assist in the Investigation and Prosecution of Persons Responsible for the Most Serious Crimes under International Law Committed in the Syrian Arab Republic since March 2011 (IIIM), Geneva, Switzerland. The incumbent will oversee the work of two major components of the Collection Analysis Support & Sharing Section (CASS), namely to build a comprehensive central repository of information and evidence, and analytical work with a view to preparing criminal law case files. The Senior Legal Officer will be under the overall direction of the Head of the IIIM and the direct supervision of the Deputy Head of the IIIM.


Within delegated authority, the Senior Legal Officer will be responsible for the following duties:

- Supervises and directs a team comprised of a Legal Officer (Coordinator of Collection/Investigations) and investigators in building the IIIM’s comprehensive central repository of information and evidence. Oversees engagement with a broad range of sources of information and evidence, including individuals, civil society, UN entities, states and other actors. Plans and oversees direct investigations to fill evidentiary gaps in the IIIM’s evidentiary holdings. Ensures that the IIIM’s survivor-centered approach, including due attention to sexual and gender-based crimes and crimes against children, is integrated into the IIIM’s collection and investigation work and that due attention is paid to broader transitional justice objectives as appropriate within the limits of existing resources. Ensures that the IIIM’s collection and investigation work is informed by and reinforces the IIIM’s analytical work and support and sharing work.

- Supervises and directs a team comprised of a legal officer (Coordinator of Analysis), analysts, legal officers, associate analysts, and assistant analysts, in carrying out the IIIM’s analytical work in support of its case file building function. To this end, oversees the IIIM’s structural investigation, covering crimes committed on all sides, including strategic lines of inquiry within the structural investigation; and building criminal law case files to criminal law standards, with a view to sharing with jurisdictions in accordance with its mandate. Ensures that the IIIM’s survivor-centered approach, including due attention to sexual and gender-based crimes and crimes against children, is integrated into the IIIM’s analytical work and that due attention is paid to broader transitional justice objectives as appropriate within the limits of existing resources. Ensures that the IIIM’s analytical work informs the IIIM’s collection and investigation work.

-Oversees the day-to-day management of the CASS collection and analysis team members, including: drafting, under the direction of the Deputy Head, components of the CASS workplans dealing with collection and analysis; approving individual workplans for collection and analysis team members; ensuring the effective allocation of human resources for collections and analysis in line with CASS priorities; ensuring a timely and coherent implementation of the UN performance appraisal system for collection and analysis team members; playing a leading role in CASS team meetings; ensuring the adoption and implementation of high quality standard operating procedures for the collection and analysis work of the CASS, including on matters concerning mission security; ensuring appropriate training opportunities for team members. Participates as a member of the IIIM senior management team in the overall management of the IIIM, including budget, recruitment, procurement and performance appraisal processes.

-Ensures that the collection and analysis work of the CASS is carried out in a coordinated manner with the work of the IIIM more broadly and, in particular coordinates closely with a team comprised of the CASS Senior Legal Officer (Support and Sharing), legal officer (Coordinator of Support and Sharing), legal officer and analyst in carrying out the IIIM’s work to share evidence and other material with, and more generally support the work of, actors involved in investigating and prosecuting crimes in the Syrian Arab Republic in national or international jurisdictions meeting the criteria set out in the IIIM’s mandate. To this end, ensures that the IIIM’s collection,iInvestigation and analytical activities are informed by the needs of actors in national or international jurisdictions whom the IIIM seeks to support; and ensures close coordination and integration between the work of the CASS and the Information Systems Management Section (ISMS).

- Provides authoritative legal and strategic advice to the Head and Deputy Head of the IIIM on highly complex and sensitive operational issues and provides input into external communications with key interlocutors for the IIIM.


PROFESSIONALISM: Knowledge of national and international criminal law, both substantive and procedural, and the functioning of criminal prosecutions at the national and international levels; proven ability to apply legal expertise to analyse a diverse range of highly complex and novel legal and evidentiary issues and to develop innovative and creative solutions; original and creative thinking, independent and impartial judgment and discretion in handling major legal issues/cases; capacity to absorb and analyse large volumes of material; superior skills in legal writing and presentation and ability to prepare indictments, briefs, opinions and related documents; a high degree of commitment to ensuring the professionalism of the IIIM’s work; a commitment to ensuring effective responses to crimes against children. Shows pride in work and in achievements; demonstrates professional competence and mastery of subject matter; is conscientious and efficient in meeting commitments, observing deadlines and achieving results; is motivated by professional rather than personal concerns; shows persistence when faced with difficult problems or challenges; remains calm in stressful situations.

PLANNING AND ORGANIZING: Develops clear goals that are consistent with agreed strategies;identifies priority activities and assignments; adjusts priorities as required; allocates appropriate amount of time and resources for completing work; foresees risks and allows for contingencies when planning; monitors and adjusts plans and actions as necessary; uses time efficiently.

TEAMWORK: Works collaboratively with colleagues to achieve organizational goals; solicits input by genuinely valuing others' ideas and expertise; is willing to learn from others; places team agenda before personal agenda; supports and acts in accordance with final group decision, even when such decisions may not entirely reflect own position; shares credit for team accomplishments and accepts joint responsibility for team shortcomings.

LEADERSHIP: Serves as a role model that other people want to follow: empowers others to translate vision into results; is proactive in developing strategies to accomplish objectives; establishes and maintains relationships with a broad range of people to understand needs and gain support; anticipates and resolves conflicts by pursuing mutually agreeable solutions; drives for change and improvements; does not accept the status quo; shows the courage to take unpopular stands. Provides leadership and takes responsibility for incorporating gender perspectives and ensuring the equal participation of women and men in all areas of work; demonstrates knowledge of strategies and commitment to the goal of gender balance in staffing.

JUDGEMENT/DECISION-MAKING: Identifies the key issues in a complex situation, and comes to the heart of the problem quickly; gathers relevant information before making a decision; considers positive and negative impacts of decisions prior to making them; takes decisions with an eye to the impact on others and on the Organization; proposes a course of action or makes a recommendation based on all available information; checks assumptions against facts; determines the actions proposed will satisfy the expressed and underlying needs for the decision; makes tough decisions when necessary.


Advanced university degree (Master’s degree or equivalent degree) in law. A first level university degree in combination with two additional years of qualifying experience may be accepted in lieu of an advanced university degree.

Work Experience

A minimum of ten years of progressively responsible professional legal experience, with a minimum of seven years working on large complex international criminal law cases in a multi-disciplinary team environment, at either the national or international level, is required.
Experience drafting or reviewing indictments (or the equivalent) is required.
Experience working on sexual and gender-based crimes is desirable.
Experience working on crimes against children is desirable.
Experience working with large volumes of digital evidence is desirable.
Experience in prosecuting complex cases under international criminal law frameworks is desirable


English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For the post advertised, fluency in English is required. Knowledge of Arabic is desirable. Knowledge of French is desirable.


Evaluation of qualified candidates may include an assessment exercise, which will be followed by competency-based interview.

Special Notice

Staff members of the United Nations Secretariat must fulfill the lateral move requirements to be eligible to apply for this vacancy. Staff members are requested to indicate all qualifying lateral moves in their Personal History Profile (PHP) and cover note.

Extension of the appointment is subject to extension of the mandate and/or the availability of the funds. Staff members are subject to the authority of the Secretary-General and to assignment by him or her. In this context, all staff are expected to move periodically to new functions in their careers in accordance with established rules and procedures.

The United Nations Secretariat is committed to achieving 50/50 gender balance in its staff. Female candidates are strongly encouraged to apply for this position.

United Nations Considerations

According to article 101, paragraph 3, of the Charter of the United Nations, the paramount consideration in the employment of the staff is the necessity of securing the highest standards of efficiency, competence, and integrity. Candidates will not be considered for employment with the United Nations if they have committed violations of international human rights law, violations of international humanitarian law, sexual exploitation, sexual abuse, or sexual harassment, or if there are reasonable grounds to believe that they have been involved in the commission of any of these acts. The term “sexual exploitation” means any actual or attempted abuse of a position of vulnerability, differential power, or trust, for sexual purposes, including, but not limited to, profiting monetarily, socially or politically from the sexual exploitation of another. The term “sexual abuse” means the actual or threatened physical intrusion of a sexual nature, whether by force or under unequal or coercive conditions. The term “sexual harassment” means any unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature that might reasonably be expected or be perceived to cause offence or humiliation, when such conduct interferes with work, is made a condition of employment or creates an intimidating, hostile or offensive work environment, and when the gravity of the conduct warrants the termination of the perpetrator’s working relationship. Candidates who have committed crimes other than minor traffic offences may not be considered for employment.

Due regard will be paid to the importance of recruiting the staff on as wide a geographical basis as possible. The United Nations places no restrictions on the eligibility of men and women to participate in any capacity and under conditions of equality in its principal and subsidiary organs. The United Nations Secretariat is a non-smoking environment.

Applicants are urged to follow carefully all instructions available in the online recruitment platform, inspira. For more detailed guidance, applicants may refer to the Manual for the Applicant, which can be accessed by clicking on “Manuals” hyper-link on the upper right side of the inspira account-holder homepage.

The evaluation of applicants will be conducted on the basis of the information submitted in the application according to the evaluation criteria of the job opening and the applicable internal legislations of the United Nations including the Charter of the United Nations, resolutions of the General Assembly, the Staff Regulations and Rules, administrative issuances and guidelines. Applicants must provide complete and accurate information pertaining to their personal profile and qualifications according to the instructions provided in inspira to be considered for the current job opening. No amendment, addition, deletion, revision or modification shall be made to applications that have been submitted. Candidates under serious consideration for selection will be subject to reference checks to verify the information provided in the application.

Job openings advertised on the Careers Portal will be removed at 11:59 p.m. (New York time) on the deadline date.

No Fee


Sorry, this job opening is no longer available.
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