Legal news from Monday, February 12, 2007
20:02 EDT

[JURIST] An Idaho State Senate [official website] committee Monday passed a bill requiring written parental consent for minors to get abortions [JURIST news archive]. In a 7-2 vote, the State Affairs Committee approved Senate Bill No. 1082 [text], which amends, repeals and adds to existing law relating to abortion to [read more]

19:02 EDT

[JURIST] The Indiana State Senate [official website] voted 39 to 10 Monday to pass a state constitutional amendment defining marriage to be between a man and a woman. While same-sex marriage [JURIST news archive] is already illegal in the state under its enactment of the Defense of Marriage Act [text], [read more]

19:02 EDT

[JURIST] The New Mexico House of Representatives [official website] passed a bill Monday that would abolish the state death penalty [JURIST news archive]. HB 190 [text; bill history] proposes replacing the death penalty with life imprisonment without possibility of release or parole. Bill sponsor Rep. Gail Chasey [official profile] said [read more]

16:02 EDT

[JURIST] French conservative presidential candidate and current Interior Minister Nicolas Sarkozy [official profile, in French; BBC profile; presidential campaign website, in French] said Monday that German Chancellor Angela Merkel [official website, in German; BBC profile] had expressed support for Sarkozy's version of a European constitution [official website; JURIST news archive], [read more]

15:02 EDT

[JURIST] UK Attorney General Lord Goldsmith [official profile] on Monday decried the new rules governing US military detainee trials contained in the Manual for Military Commissions [text, PDF; JURIST report] released late last month. Speaking to the Amercian Bar Association [official website] House of Delegates at the ABA Midyear Meeting [read more]

14:02 EDT

[JURIST] Nashville Mayor Bill Purcell [official website] vetoed an amendment to the City Charter [text] Monday that made English the official language of the city government. The Nashville City Council approved [JURIST report] the amendment last week, but city attorneys advised Purcell that it violated the state and federal constitutions [read more]

12:02 EDT

[JURIST] Turkish Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul [official profile, English version] said Monday that he favors amending the controversial Article 301 [Amnesty backgrounder; JURIST news archive] of Turkey's penal code [text, in Turkish] without eliminating the provision altogether. The article makes "insulting the Turkish identity" a crime. Gul expanded on his [read more]

12:02 EDT

[JURIST] The cabinet of the Somali transitional government [official website] approved a new anti-terrorism law allowing sentences of life imprisonment or execution for engaging in or funding terrorist activity, Somalia's Information Minister Madow Nunow Mohamed announced Monday. The law, which must still be approved by President Abdullahi Yusuf Ahmed [BBC [read more]

12:02 EDT

[JURIST] A Sudanese Foreign Ministry official said Monday that Sudan [JURIST news archive] will prevent a UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) [official website] investigation team from entering the country unless the UN agrees to replace team member Bertrand Ramcharan [official profile]. As a former UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, [read more]

11:02 EDT

[JURIST] The Assets Examination Committee in Thailand [JURIST news archive], charged with investigating allegations of corruption by former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra [JURIST news archive; BBC profile] and his family, recommended Monday that criminal tax evasion charges be filed against Thaksin's wife, Pojaman Shinawatra, as well as her secretary and [read more]

11:02 EDT

[JURIST] A German state court in Stuttgart ruled Monday that Brigitte Mohnhaupt [Wikipedia profile], a second-generation member of the ultra-left German group Red Army Faction [Wikipedia backgrounder], also known as the Baader-Meinhof gang, will be granted parole on March 27 after being imprisoned for 24 years. The court did not [read more]

10:02 EDT

[JURIST] International donors urged Cambodia Monday to finally pass an anti-corruption law that has been in the works for more than a decade. US Ambassador to Cambodia Joseph Mussomeli [official profile] expressed disappointment on behalf of donors such as Japan, France and the United States that Cambodia [JURIST news archive] [read more]

09:02 EDT

[JURIST] Egyptian officials on Sunday released from detention Muslim cleric Osama Moustafa Hassan Nasr [Wikipedia profile], the man at the heart of Italian judicial proceedings against US and Italian intelligence agents implicated in his alleged 2003 kidnapping [JURIST news archive; WP timeline] and extraordinary rendition [JURIST news archive] from Milan. [read more]

09:02 EDT

[JURIST] The Philippines government has pledged to cooperate fully with the UN rights official who arrived in the country Monday to investigate the surge of political murders. In a statement on behalf of Philippines President Gloria Arroyo [official website; BBC profile], Secretary Ignacio Bunye stated that the Philippines welcomes [press [read more]

08:02 EDT

[JURIST] The Iraqi High Tribunal (IHT) [official website; HRW backgrounder] sentenced former Iraqi Vice President Taha Yassin Ramadan [Trial Watch profile; JURIST news archive] to death by hanging Monday in connection with crimes against humanity committed in the town of Dujail in 1982. Three other defendants in the case were [read more]

08:02 EDT

[JURIST] The Portuguese government plans to seek approval in the Portuguese Parliament [official website, in Portuguese] of a proposal to make abortion legal in the country, despite low turnout [JURIST report] in Sunday's referendum on loosening the current law [text, in Portuguese]. Approximately 59 percent of voters were in favor [read more]

07:02 EDT

[JURIST] Jury selection begins Monday in the first trial of thousands of lawsuits brought by Louisiana homeowners affected by the Hurricane Katrina disaster [JURIST news archive] against their insurance companies. Homeowners Lawrence and Elizabeth Tomlinson are suing Allstate [corporate website] insurance company in federal court for bad faith, alleging that [read more]

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