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Legal news from Friday, September 22, 2006
by Joe Shaulis

Members of the European Parliament's Human Rights Subcommittee expressed concern Friday that the human rights situation in Turkey is worsening, saying they heard increased accounts of torture, abductions and other abuses during a recent fact-finding visit to southeastern Turkey, where Kurdish separatists are clashing with the military. British delegate Richard Howitt [official …

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by Joe Shaulis

The US Department of Homeland Security laid out its plans to put up a "virtual fence" along the US borders with Canada and Mexico during a press conference Friday announcing that Boeing Corp. has been awarded a $67 million contract to begin the project. The virtual fence, a …

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by Joe Shaulis

The Special Court for Sierra Leone (SCSL) has set April 2 as the tentative trial date for former Liberian President Charles Taylor. Justice Julia Sebutinde announced the date Friday during a pretrial hearing in The Hague, expressing concern that Taylor be tried without "undue delay." Taylor has been in UN …

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by Lisl Brunner

A prosecutor told a British court-martial Thursday that senior UK military officers should be held responsible for the abuse of Iraqi detainees in UK custody because they failed to develop adequate checking procedures on junior personnel. Colonel Jorge Mendonca, Major Michael Peebles, and Warrant Officer Mark Davies are among seven British soldiers being court-martialed …

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by Lisl Brunner

Thailand's king has voiced his support for Tuesday's coup that brought General Sonthi Boonyaratglin to power, according to an announcement on Thai state-run television on Friday. Although the leaders of the new "Council of Administrative Reform" claimed to have the king's backing on Wednesday, the TV statement was the first public endorsement of the new …

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by Lisl Brunner

French President Jacques Chirac on Friday reaffirmed his confidence in the judiciary after meeting with top members of the French judiciary who have asked Chirac to rein in French Interior Minister Nicolas Sarkozy for his accusations that the Paris courts are too lenient on criminals. Sarkozy, who …

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by Kate Heneroty

US Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) cannot serve concurrently as both a senator and a military judge because it violates the US Constitution's separation of powers requirement, the US Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces has ruled. The court on Wednesday upheld a lower court ruling, and wrote that "one of …

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by Kate Heneroty

The US Senate Judiciary Committee approved the OPEN Government Act Thursday, a bill that would punish federal agencies that fail to respond to requests under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) in a timely manner. The bill would give federal agencies 20 days to determine whether to comply with the FOIA request …

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by Kate Heneroty

Two San Francisco Chronicle reporters will be jailed if they continue to refuse to identify the person who leaked secret grand jury testimony from Barry Bonds, Jason Giambi and other athletes, regarding an investigation into the now-defunct Bay Area Laboratory Co-operative (BALCO), a federal judge said Thursday. Lance Williams and Mark Fainaru-Wada published …

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by Kate Heneroty

Christian protestors in Indonesia burned cars, government buildings, a prison and Muslim-owned businesses Friday following the executions of three Roman Catholic men convicted in 2001 of leading a Christian militia which killed at least 70 Muslims in 2000. Thousands of protestors gathered in Flores, the men's birthplace, and in the …

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