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Legal news from Tuesday, November 13, 2007
by Mike Rosen-Molina

The US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) has admitted that it has several recorded interrogations of suspected "enemy combatants," contrary to previous assertions. According to a letter released Tuesday, the agency mistakenly denied in court declarations that it possessed one audio and two video tapes during the trial of Sept. 11 conspirator Zacarias Moussaoui [JURIST news …

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by Melissa Bancroft

Canada's ruling Conservative Party government Tuesday reintroduced two Senate reform bills that would abolish government-appointed senators and limit the number of terms a senator could serve. The first bill [C-56 text] would allow each province to vote to fill vacancies in the Senate. The federal prime minister would then rely on the results to appoint …

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by Deirdre Jurand

Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick on Tuesday signed a bill which mandates that abortion clinic protesters stand no closer than 35 feet from entrances of reproductive health care facilities. The new law, now one of the nation's strictest on clinic protesters, amends Massachusetts' 2000 floating buffer-zone law, which established specific restrictions in …

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by Devin Montgomery

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has told the UN Security Council that he is nominating Serge Brammertz to replace Carla Del Ponte as the next chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY). Brammertz is currently serving as the head of a UN probe into the assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister …

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by Caitlin Price

A week-long meeting of parties to the Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons (CCW) concluded Tuesday without delegates reaching an agreement on a legally binding ban on cluster munitions. Representatives from 102 nations did agree to negotiate a new pact regarding "the humanitarian impact of cluster munitions," but failed to agree on a …

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by Caitlin Price

The US Army has issued a statement to top personnel reiterating the Army's ban on waterboarding as an interrogation technique, AP reported Tuesday. The Army officially banned the use of waterboarding in September 2006 with the release of the interrogation guide Field Manual 2-22.3, which deemed it a "prohibited action." …

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by Caitlin Price

A US Marine declined to enter a plea at his Tuesday arraignment on charges stemming from the killings of 24 Iraqi citizens in Haditha in November 2005. Lance Cpl. Stephen B. Tatum faces a maximum of 19 years in prison if found guilty of involuntary manslaughter, reckless endangerment, and …

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by Alexis Unkovic

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has nominated former Canadian Deputy Attorney General Daniel Bellemare to serve as the commissioner of the UN International Independent Investigation Commission (IIIC), a UN spokesperson said Tuesday. If approved, Bellemare will head the UN investigation into the assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri [JURIST …

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by Alexis Unkovic

Officials in Myanmar arrested prominent labor rights activist Suu Suu Nway Tuesday, according to a representative for the National League for Democracy-Liberated Area Myanmar in Thailand. An official speaking on condition of anonymity told AP that Nway was detained Tuesday when she attempted to post a leaflet near the hotel of visiting UN Special …

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by Alexis Unkovic

Yahoo! Inc. agreed Tuesday to settle a lawsuit filed in US federal court alleging that the Internet giant aided and abetted human rights violations committed by the Chinese government by providing Chinese officials with information, including e-mail records and user ID numbers, that helped them to identify pro-democracy activists in violation of the …

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by James M Yoch Jr

The US Supreme Court on Tuesday granted certiorari in Richlin Security Service v. Chertoff (06-1717) [docket; cert. petition, PDF], a case where the Court will consider whether paralegal services can be recovered at the market rate when determining the payment of attorneys' fees. The US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit ruled [opinion, …

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by James M Yoch Jr

Representatives of 26 members of the Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS) met Tuesday in Maldives to work on a draft resolution on climate change to be presented at the 2007 UN Framework Convention on Climate Change conference (UNFCCC) in December. AOSIS, a coalition of 43 of the world's smallest island nations and states, plans …

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by James M Yoch Jr

The Malaysian government is drafting legislation that will make it more difficult to hire foreign workers in an effort to stem the flow of illegal immigrants into the country, according to Tuesday media reports. Deputy Home Affairs Minister Datuk Tan Chai Ho told the Star that the legislation will likely contain heightened hiring requirements and …

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by Michael Sung

The Japanese House of Representatives passed a controversial bill Tuesday re-authorizing Japan's support for US anti-terror operations in the Indian Ocean, setting the course for Japanese ships to resume refueling for US vessels involved in anti-terrorism or anti-smuggling operations. The bill, which bars the refueling of US vessels involved in military or humanitarian relief operations …

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by Bernard Hibbitts

Two more leaders of the Pakistani bar have been arrested in Sindh province, according to a Human Rights Commission of Pakistan statement Tuesday. Former Sindh high court bar association presidents Akhter Hussain and Abdul Hafeez Lakho were taken into custody and ordered to be detained for 90 days in Karachi's Central Prison. HRCP says: "These two were managing …

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by Michael Sung

The Ministry of Health of the People's Republic of China said Monday that the government is working toward relaxing its strict policy of denying all HIV-positive aliens entry to the country. A ministry spokesperson said that the policy was initially put in place before the transmission of HIV was fully understood. …

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by Bernard Hibbitts

Emergency Pakistani Chief Justice Abdul Hameed Dogar administered oaths of office under Pakistan's Provisional Constitution Order to two more high court judges Tuesday. The addition of Justice Mohammad Akhtar Shabbir and Justice Zia Perwez to the Supreme Court of Pakistan brings the reconstituted court's total complement to 11, just one shy of the reduced …

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by Michael Sung

Opposition lawmakers in the Philippines House of Representatives filed a petition Monday calling for the impeachment of Philippine President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo for alleged bribery, graft, corruption, and human rights abuses. The impeachment complaint, which must be approved by the House of Representatives before the Philippines Senate can initiate a trial, is the second attempt …

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by Jaime Jansen

The International Security Assistance Force (ISAF), led by the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) is exposing terrorism detainees to risks of torture by transferring NATO-held detainees into custody of Afghanistan authorities, Amnesty International said in a report Monday. Amnesty's report focuses on actions by Belgium, Canada, the Netherlands, Norway, and the United …

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by Jaime Jansen

The Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC) announced formal charges Tuesday against former Cambodian Foreign Minister Ieng Sary and his wife Ieng Thirith, who served as minister for social affairs. The two were arrested Monday and are both charged with crimes against humanity committed during …

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by Jaime Jansen

Pakistani riot police blocked former Pakistani Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto from leading a planned 160-mile march from Lahore to Islamabad Tuesday protesting President Pervez Musharraf's imposition of emergency rule. Bhutto was placed under house arrest for seven days early Tuesday when riot police used barbed wire and dump trucks loaded with sand …

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