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Legal news from Friday, April 6, 2007
by Gabriel Haboubi

A three-judge panel of the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit ruled Friday that it lacks authority to interfere with an Iraqi court conviction and pending death sentence for US citizen Mohammad Munaf, and could not grant a writ of habeas corpus. The court recognized that Munaf, …

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by Gabriel Haboubi

UN Legal Counsel Nicolas Michel will meet with Lebanese parliament speaker Nabih Berri about the latter's efforts at stalling the establishment of an international tribunal to probe the 2005 assassination of former Prime Minister Rafik al-Hariri, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon told reporters Thursday. Earlier this week the …

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by Gabriel Haboubi

The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) Friday ordered Russia to compensate a Chechen woman for the disappearance and alleged killing of her husband in 2000. Applicant Asmart Magomedovna Baysayeva's husband disappeared on his way to work, a trip that took him through a checkpoint manned by the Russian military [official website, in …

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by Stefanie Presley

New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson (D) has signed into law a groundbreaking bill designed to promote drug overdose reporting by granting limited immunity from drug possession charges for those drug users, family members and acquaintances who make the 911 call. The measure is the first such legislation to be adopted by any …

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by Michael Sung

A panel of Japanese experts will begin reviewing the Japanese constitution later this month to determine whether Japan needs to revise Article 9, which has been interpreted to bar Japan from maintaining military forces and from using force in international conflicts except in self-defense, Kyodo News Service reported Friday. Prime Minister Shinzo …

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by James M Yoch Jr

Cambodian judges on the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC) fired back at their international counterparts on Friday with a statement accusing the international judges of deliberately delaying the trials of former Khmer Rouge leaders by threatening to postpone the April 30 meeting to draft the ECCC's internal rules. The international judges on …

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by JURIST Staff

The North Carolina Senate passed a joint resolution Thursday apologizing for the state government's role in the practice of slavery, detailing various legal steps in the 17th through the 20th centuries which had suppressed the freedom of black people in the state and expressing "its profound contrition for the official acts that sanctioned and perpetuated the …

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by James M Yoch Jr

Rwandan President Paul Kagame has pardoned former President Pasteur Bizimungu, freeing him Friday from a 15-year prison sentence handed down in 2004 for inciting violence, embezzlement, organizing a militia, and associating with criminals. Bizimungu's release comes nearly a year after Bizimungu sent Kagame a letter in May 2006 asking for clemency, …

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by James M Yoch Jr

China's State Council on Friday banned the sale of human organs used for transplants effective May 1. The new regulation prohibits individuals and organizations from trading organs, such as hearts, lungs, and kidneys, following allegations of involuntary donations and international criticism that human organs taken from executed prisoners were sold to foreigners. The regulation only …

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by Lisl Brunner

Canada, Sweden and Eritrea are pressuring Ethiopia to reveal details regarding the foreign nationals it has allegedly detained in secret prisons in collaboration with the FBI and CIA. The existence of prisons in which US government agencies have interrogated individuals suspected of having ties to al Qaeda was disclosed on Tuesday after Human Rights …

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by Lisl Brunner

The Serbian Supreme Court has upheld the sentence of Anton Lekaj, the first ethnic Albanian to be convicted by a Serb court of war crimes in the Kosovo region. A member of the Kosovo Liberation Army, Lekaj's trial began before a special war crimes tribunal in Serbia in 2005. In September, …

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by Lisl Brunner

UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Louise Arbour released two reports Friday detailing alleged rapes and disappearances carried out by militia soldiers in the Darfur region of Sudan at the end of 2006. According to the first report released by Arbour, at least 15 rapes and sexual assaults were committed by men …

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by Michael Sung

Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT), chair of the US Senate Judiciary Committee, asked Attorney General Alberto Gonzales in a letter Thursday to provide more details and respond to outstanding questions concerning his role in the firings of eight US Attorneys. Leahy asked Gonzales to submit a written …

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by Michael Sung

California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger Thursday filed a stay order in California's 3rd District Court of Appeal to block a ruling unfavorable to his plan to transfer excess prisoners to out-of-state facilities. California had filed its own appeal Tuesday. The Sacramento County Superior Court ruled in …

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