Currently OSLA has legal offices in Addis Ababa, Beirut, Geneva, Nairobi and New York. OSLA is a small team supplemented by some dedicated volunteer lawyers.

Photo of Kayta Melluish


Katya qualified as a Barrister in England and Wales in 1999. She practised in the employment and criminal law fields in London before joining the United Nations in 2005 as a prosecuting Trial Attorney at the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda. Since then, she has served the United Nations in various legal capacities, including within OSLA and at the United Nations Dispute Tribunal, and as Legal Advisor to the Director-General of the United Nations Office at Nairobi. Katya has an LLM in Advanced Legal Practice from the University of Northumbria, and studied law in London after obtaining an MA in Modern History from the University of Oxford. Katya is based in the New York office.

Photo of Robbie Leighton


Robbie qualified as a Solicitor in England and Wales and worked as a criminal defence lawyer for five years, successfully defending clients charged with all manner of crimes including murder. In 2010 he moved to Côte d’Ivoire where he worked with the Danish Refugee Council, developing income generating activity projects for refugees. He later worked with the UNUCI Rule of Law section. Since joining OSLA, Robbie has gained a wealth of experience advising staff members on issues relating to their contract of employment and representing them before the UNDT and UNAT. Robbie has an MA from Edinburgh University and studied law at the College of Law in London. Robbie is based in the Geneva office.

Photo of Duke Danquah


Duke is admitted to the Bar High Court of Ghana and to the New York State Bar. After working for a number of years in the UN Secretariat including the International Civil Service Commission and for the Administration of Children’s Service (New York City), he was appointed as the Secretary of the Disciplinary Committee (UNDP/UNOPS/UNHCR) for three years. Duke served as a legal officer in the OSLA’s forebear, the Panel of Counsel, until the creation of OSLA in 2009. Since then he has been a Volunteer Counsel in OSLA, whilst maintain a small law practice externally. Duke is based in the New York Office.

Photo of Brandon Gardner


Brandon is a member of the Pennsylvania Bar, and practised in the US before joining the UN in 2007, initially as a volunteer with Department of Justice of the United Nations Mission in Kosovo. He has since been employed as a legal officer in the United Nations in various roles. Prior to joining OSLA, Brandon worked with UNMIK’s Human Rights Advisory Panel and with its Rule of Law Liaison Office. Brandon holds a Juris Doctorate from the University of Pittsburgh School of Law, and a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and International Relations from the University of Pittsburgh. Brandon is based in the Addis Ababa office.

Photo of Mohamed Abdou


Mohamed is a judicial member of the administrative courts in Egypt. He specializes in administrative and criminal law. Prior to joining OSLA, Mohamed worked for the International Criminal Court and the International Labour Organization. He also interned with the UN Office of Legal Affairs. He has served as a criminal prosecutor with the Office of the Prosecutor General in Cairo. Mohamed is completing a PhD in public international law at the University of Paris I – Panthéon Sorbonne. He graduated from the same University in 2005 and holds an LLM in International and Comparative Law from Indiana University School of Law. Mohamed is based in our Geneva office.

Photo of Evelyn Kamau


Evelyn was admitted as an Advocate of the High Court of Kenya in 2001. She worked as an Appeals Counsel at the International Criminal for Rwanda for nine years, and has since worked with the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights in Uganda as a Human Rights officer – Legal, focusing on countering discrimination and strengthening accountability mechanisms. She has served on several administrative committees and panels dealing with recruitments, promotions, procurements, contracts and disciplinary issues. Evelyn holds an Mst in International Human Rights Law from the University of Oxford and an LLM in International and Comparative Law from the University of Pittsburgh. Evelyn is based in the Nairobi office.

Photo of Julia Kyung Min Lee


Julia is qualified to practise law in Ontario, Canada, where she worked in private practice in as a litigation attorney in the areas of commercial, employment and human rights law. She joined the United Nations in 2012, working for the Prosecution’s Trial team in the case Prosecutor v. Ratko Mladic at the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia. Julia has also worked as a legal intern at the Presidency of the International Criminal Court. Julia holds a Juris Doctorate from Queen’s University, and a Bachelor of Laws in civil law from Université de Montréal. Julia is based in the Nairobi office.

Photo of Shubha Naik


Shubha is qualified to practice law in India and for ten years had served in the Legal Department of the Indian Navy. She has gained experience in the field of administrative, employment and criminal law whilst serving in the Indian Navy as a Judge Advocate Officer (Legal Officer). She holds a Bachelor of Law (Hons) degree from Salgaocar College of Law, Goa, India and has obtained LLM from the National University of Singapore. She also holds a Post Graduate Diploma from the Mumbai University, India in Alternative Dispute Methods. Shubha is presently based in the Addis Ababa office.

Photo of Dorota Banaszewska


Dorota is qualified to practice law in Poland and Germany. She has experience in various areas of law including International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights Law. Dorota completed her Bachelor’s and Master’s of German and Polish Law degree at the European University Viadrina and her Master’s degree in Polish Law at the Adam Mickiewicz University. Her legal education also includes studies in Institut d’études politiques de Paris. Dorota is based in the New York office.

Photo of Omar Yousef Shehabi

Omar Yousef Shehabi

Omar is a member of the California and Illinois state bars in the United States and has qualified as a solicitor in England and Wales. He practiced as a labour and employment attorney in the United States before joining the United Nations Development Programme technical assistance mission to the Palestinian negotiating team in permanent-status negotiations with Israel. He later served as a legal officer with the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA). Omar is a doctoral candidate at Yale Law School, where he previously earned an LLM. He also holds an LLM from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, a Juris Doctor from the University of Notre Dame Law School, and a baccalaureate from the George Washington University. Omar is based in the New York office.

The OSLA legal team is supported byJudith Balasubramaniam and Talha Rathore.