Skip to main content

Mark Wassouf

Year of call:

Mark is a barrister with expertise in public international law, international arbitration (with a focus on disputes arising under investment treaties and English law governed contracts) and public inquiries.

Prior to transferring to the bar Mark qualified as a solicitor at Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP (2009-2011) and practised as an associate in the firm’s international arbitration and public international law group (2011-2013) where he acted and advised on commercial and investment treaty arbitrations in various sectors, as well as on the foundation and operation of the Bahrain Independent Commission of Inquiry into human rights abuses in 2011-12. He also subsequently advised on the implementation of the commission’s recommendations. During his time at Freshfields he spent over a year on secondment to the firm’s Dubai and Bahrain offices (first as a trainee and later as an associate) where he regularly worked with clients and local counsel in Arabic.

Since joining Doughty Street Chambers in 2014, Mark has developed a broad international law practice. He frequently acts for clients making applications regarding alleged human rights abuses to the various UN human rights mechanisms; he recently acted as rapporteur, instructed by the IBA’s Human Rights Institute, on a delegation examining the extent to which the Cambodian judiciary complies with Cambodia’s international obligations (the report was published by the IBA in September 2015); and he was led by Ben Emmerson QC on two reports on the extent to which the Palestinian anti-corruption courts comply with applicable international rights and standards (instructed by Baker & Mckenzie LLP). Mark has some experience of international criminal law, having acted as junior (led by Ben Emmerson QC, Rodney Dixon QC and Amal Clooney) on the Senussi case before the International Criminal Court.

Mark maintains a busy practice in both investment treaty and commercial arbitration. He maintains a close relationship with the law firm of Three Crowns LLP, with which he acts on a number of arbitrations. He has also recently been instructed by Obeidat & Freihat (a well-established Jordanian law firm) as sole counsel on a potential Jordan-based, commercial arbitration arising under an English law-governed contract. Mark has also acted in arbitration-related proceedings before the English High Court, recently successfully resisting the attempted setting aside of an arbitral award (instructed and led by Constantine Partasides QC).

Mark undertakes work on public inquiries, both internationally and in England and Wales. In 2011-2012, while an associate at Freshfields, Mark lived in Bahrain, advising on the Bahrain Independent Commission of Inquiry into human rights abuses committed in the context of the Arab Spring. While in Bahrain Mark acted as junior to Tariq Baloch (3 Verulam Buildings). Mark is also presently instructed as Junior Counsel (led by Ben Emmerson QC and Hugh Davies OBE QC) on the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse in England and Wales (often referred to as the “Goddard Inquiry” after the inquiry’s chairperson, Hon. Lowell Goddard DNZM).

Finally, Mark has a long-standing commitment to pro bono work. He regularly accepts instructions on international cases involving human rights abuses on a pro bono basis.  He also represents individuals pro bono at appeal hearings before the Asylum Support Tribunal in London and he is currently working closely with Three Crowns LLP on the development of their internal pro bono programme.

Mark can be instructed directly in suitable cases under the Bar’s Direct Access scheme.

Mark is fluent in Arabic and has a working knowledge of French. 


Regional expertise

Language skills

Arabic, French


International Institute of Strategic Studies, Arundel House, 13-15 Arundel Street, Temple Place, London WC2R 3DX


Venue: Doughty Street Chambers, 54 Doughty Street, London WC1N 2LS
Venue: Doughty Street Chambers, 53-54 Doughty Street, London WC1N 2LS