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Internship Programme Guidelines

Important note: to ensure their application will be reviewed, applicants should familiarise themselves with the Internship applicant's manual. Incomplete applications will not be reviewed.

There are a number of rules governing the Tribunal's Regular Internship Programme. The eligibility of applicants and the procedural operation of the Regular Internship Programme is explained below.

Internship Availability and Duration

The ICTY Internship selection and recruitment procedures are conducted on an ongoing basis, with each section posting internship vacancies on the United Nations Career portal as and when they become available. The duration of an ICTY Internship can range from a minimum of three months to a maximum of six months.

Selection Procedure

ICTY internship job openings are posted on the UN Careers Portal page at https://careers.un.org, and applications are accepted only in response to these current internship job openings.  Open applications are NOT accepted.  Applicants are advised to submit their application approximately six months prior to their proposed official starting date.

Short-listed candidates may be contacted by the hiring team directly if further information is needed during the review of their application. Due to the high volume of applications received, candidates who have not been short-listed will not be contacted.

Eligibility Criteria for the ICTY Internship Programme

The majority of the internship positions available at the Tribunal are of a legal nature, and applicants for these internships must have a university degree or be in the final stage of their undergraduate studies.

If a candidate for a legal internship 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: public international law, international humanitarian law, human rights law, private international law, criminal law, comparative law, and criminology.

Applicants applying for non-legal internships need post-secondary education or training relevant for their desired section (e.g. journalism, translation and interpretation, information technology, engineering, logistics, or human resources management).

All applicants must be proficient in English and/or French, both written and oral. Knowledge of other languages, particularly Bosnian/Croatian/Serbian, is an asset.

Applicants must be at least 18 years of age, but there are no additional age-related restrictions.  No work experience is required for an ICTY internship, but work experience can be advantageous when applying for some areas. 

Applicants must be nominated by an educational institution, government body or private organisation.

Application Procedure for ICTY Internships

All of the documents listed below must be attached to each UN Careers Portal application for an ICTY internship job opening, and all documents must be in English or in French:

  1. completed ICTY Intern Acceptance and Undertaking
  2. completed Internship preference and availability form
  3. Two (2) letters of recommendation
  4. Copies of university/law studies transcripts (including courses taken and grades received)
  5. A photocopy of your valid medical insurance OR a signed statement confirming your intent to obtain medical insurance while you are in the Netherlands


  1. A sample of written work preferably in a field relevant to the work of the Tribunal and not longer than ten pages. 

Incomplete applications will not be considered, and candidates will not be reminded to submit missing documents. All of the documents listed above must be attached to each ICTY Internship application submitted via the UN Careers Portal.

Due to the varying needs and capacities within each section of the ICTY it is not always possible to assign interns to their section of first preference. This should not be interpreted as comment on the individual's application but merely reflects the working requirements of the Tribunal.

Further Rules and Conditions Governing ICTY Internships

The ICTY 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.

Interns are not considered in any respect as officials or staff members of the United Nations. 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 insurance coverage.

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 of the Tribunal. In this connection, each prospective intern must sign the Acceptance and Undertaking Form and attach this to their UN Careers Portal application.

There should be no expectation of employment by the ICTY or United Nations following the completion of an ICTY internship.

Interns must provide written notice to their supervisor(s) and the Internship Office should illness or other unforeseen circumstances prevent them from completing the internship.

Candidates of certain nationalities must obtain a visa authorising their stay in the Netherlands before they depart for The Hague to begin their internship. The list of countries whose nationals must obtain a visa to enter the Netherlands can be found here: http://www.government.nl/issues/visa-for-the-netherlands-and-the-caribbean-parts-of-the-kingdom.

 While this is the overall responsibility of the selected candidate, the Registry will provide information and supporting documents in this regard.