It was a wonderful week to be working in the nation’s capital with all of the Independence Day celebrations taking place on the National Mall. There were several events to choose from, such as the Smithsonian Folklife Festival, the National Independence Day Parade, and the beautiful evening fireworks. The display could better be seen from one of the many buildings offering rooftop views, or even from a boat on the Potomac River, but I opted to watch the display at street-level, close to our office. While I perhaps did not see the whole panorama of the display, I did avoid the crowds!
Our offices were a little more quiet this week due to this being a holiday week, but we had our weekly meetings, and I got to spend some time researching the history of mediation in Kyrgyzstan. As a formal legal institution, mediation is new to the country, but there is a long and rich tradition of utilizing dialogue to resolve conflicts in the region of Kyrgyzstan. Given my background in comparative politics, the function of various legal traditions in the Middle East has been really interesting for me to study–in fact, it is exactly what I hoped to be studying as I started law school. I am looking forward to further researching mediation and other legal concepts in Kyrgyzstan in the coming final weeks of my internship with the ABA!