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Legal news from Thursday, March 5, 2009
by Devin Montgomery

The California Supreme Court on Thursday heard oral arguments in three cases challenging the constitutionality of Proposition 8, the ballot measure passed in November that banned same-sex marriage in the state. Equality California challenged the validity of the proposition, arguing that it went against the state's …

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by Andrew Gilmore

A federal judge at the US District Court for the District of New Jersey on Thursday upheld the guilty verdicts reached by a jury against five men convicted of plotting to kill US soldiers at Fort Dix. The five men, Serdar Tatar, Mohamad Ibrahim Shnewer, Dritan Duka, Eljvir Duka, and Shain Duka, were …

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by Andrew Gilmore

The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) ruled Thursday that Russia is liable for the death of an ethnic Chechen at the hands of Russian forces in 2000, finding Russia in violation of the European Convention on Human Rights. The judgment orders the Russian government to pay damages of nearly €37,000 to the victim's …

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by Devin Montgomery

Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir on Thursday scoffed at the warrant for his arrest issued by the International Criminal Court (ICC) earlier this week. Speaking to a crowd of thousands in Khartoum, Bashir said the warrant was an effort by Western countries to reassert colonial power over the …

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by Caitlin Price

Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Court will seek INTERPOL arrest warrants for more than 100 Israelis on war crimes charges stemming from the conflict in Gaza, prosecutors said Thursday. Iran announced in December that it would establish a court to try Gaza war crimes suspects in absentia. On Monday, a report from Iranian state broadcaster …

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by Benjamin Hackman

Afghanistan's human rights progress has been thwarted by armed conflict, censorship, abuse of power, and violence against women, according to a report delivered Thursday to the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) by UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay. The report says that addressing these problems requires addressing …

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by Andrew Morgan

A judge for the US District Court for the District of Connecticut on Thursday reversed a former Navy signalman's conviction for material support of terrorism. Judge Mark Kravitz set aside the conviction of Hassan Abu-Jihaad, finding that the facts of the case did not support the jury's determination that Abu-Jihaad had provided either "physical assets" …

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by Safiya Boucaud

A Singaporean member of the Jemaah Islamiyah (JI) terrorist group admitted his role in plotting the foiled 2001 attack of an Indonesian airport, while testifying at the trial of two Indonesian terrorist suspects in the South Jakarta District Court Thursday. Mohammad Hassan bin Saynudin said that in 2001, he and other JI operatives planned …

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by Steve Czajkowski

Former White House advisor Karl Rove and former White House Counsel Harriet Miers will provide testimony before the US House Judiciary Committee concerning the firing of US Attorneys, allegedly for political reasons, the committee announced Wednesday after reaching an agreement with Bush administration officials. The agreement between the previous administration …

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by Steve Czajkowski

The European Court of Justice (ECJ) ruled Thursday that UK regulations permitting mandatory retirement policies for workers who reach the age of 65 do not violate an EU anti-discrimination law. The case was originally brought by the group Age Concern England, which argued that the UK regulations violate a European Commission …

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by Ximena Marinero

The Zimbabwe High Court ruled on Wednesday that the Southern Africa Development Community Tribunal (SADC Tribunal) is not superior to the courts of the individual SADC member countries, in a decision invalidating a SADC Tribunal ruling in favor of white Zimbabwe farmers whose lands were expropriated by a government land reform program. The …

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by Ximena Marinero

The US is resuming active participation as an observer in the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC), according to interim Charge d'Affaires to the US Mission in Geneva Mark Sorella in his address to the council Wednesday. Sorella said that the US is committed "to work alongside all those working in …

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