Freshfields counsel appointed Court of Cassation judge in Bahrain Chamber of Dispute Resolution
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer (‘Freshfields’) counsel Amani Khalifa has been appointed as a Court of Cassation judge in the Kingdom of Bahrain, seconded to the Bahrain Chamber of Dispute Resolution (BCDR).
Amani was officially sworn in by the administration of an oath on 15 February 2022 in the presence of HE Counselor, Abdulla Bin Hasan Albuainain, Vice President of the Supreme Judicial Court and President of the Cassation Court. The appointment by Royal Decree 3 of 2022 is at the highest rank in Bahrain’s judiciary.
Amani, who is a counsel in Freshfields’ global projects disputes practice, will hear commercial disputes valued above $1.3 million, which parties have opted to hear in English under Bahraini law.
An arbitration specialist, Amani handles large, complex construction disputes relating to projects throughout the MENA region with an emphasis on the real estate and oil and gas sectors. She is an arbitrator on the basketball arbitral tribunal, an independent tribunal recognised by FIBA and an anticorruption hearing officer of the Tennis Integrity Unit. Amani also sits frequently as arbitrator in infrastructure disputes throughout the MENA region.
Commenting on the appointment, Amani said: “I am deeply honoured by this appointment, and humbled to take on such an impactful role. Having English-speaking judges who are fluent in the law of the region will undoubtedly provide greater clarity and transparency for many commercial parties as cases are heard.
“As women account for a very small minority of judges across the region, I see my appointment as an important step in the right direction to increase the number of women in the judiciary. It is my hope to help effect change and show the next generation of women in law what is possible.”
• The United Nation’s 2019 report, “Removing Barriers, Increasing Numbers”, found that the average proportion of women judges in the Arab States was 14%, with the average in Bahrain being 9% and, in Egypt, less than 1%.
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