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Legal news from Thursday, May 14, 2009
by Jaclyn Belczyk

New Hampshire Governor John Lynch said Thursday that he is willing to sign a same-sex marriage bill into law, but only if the legislature amends it to make it clear that religious groups will not be required to perform or recognize the unions. The New Hampshire legislature gave final approval to the …

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by Matt Glenn

Spain's Cabinet approved a draft bill Thursday that would liberalize Spanish abortion law. The new bill, which must now be approved by Parliament, would give women the right to an abortion any time during the first fourteen weeks of pregnancy. During the next eight weeks an abortion would be allowed only …

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by Jaclyn Belczyk

Speaker of the US House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) said Thursday that the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) misled Congress about the use of enhanced interrogation techniques during the Bush administration. Pelosi, the former top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, said that CIA officials had explicitly said …

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by Matt Glenn

The government of Myanmar received widespread international criticism after jailing democracy advocate and Nobel Laureate Aung San Suu Kyi Thursday for violating the terms of her house arrest. Myanmar's military junta arrested Suu Kyi after a US man swam across a lake to the compound in which she was …

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by Christian Ehret

The German Bundestag voted Wednesday in favor of heightened requirements for late-term abortions including a three-day waiting period and a mandatory psychological evaluation. Current law in Germany outlaws abortions after 12 weeks of pregnancy except in circumstances in which the mental or physical health of the mother is threatened or when …

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by Jaclyn Belczyk

Speaker of the Russian State Duma Boris Gryzlov said Wednesday that a proposal by President Dmitry Medvedev to allow parliament to select the head of the Constitutional Court will be supported by the parliamentary majority. Under the proposed legislative amendments, the 19 members of the court would no longer have …

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by Jaclyn Belczyk

US President Barack Obama is considering six possible nominees for the US Supreme Court to replace retiring Justice David Souter, including five women, the Associated Press reported Thursday. This six names disclosed by White House officials are Solicitor General Elena Kagan, Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, US …

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by Christian Ehret

The Italian Chamber of Deputies, the lower house of parliament, on Wednesday approved legislation that would increase the penalties for illegal immigration by a vote of 297-255. The controversial legislation provides that an alien who enters or resides in Italy in violation of existing immigration laws shall be fined between 5,000 and …

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by Jaclyn Belczyk

Former head of the Office of Legal Counsel (OLC) and federal judge Jay Bybee, who signed off on memos detailing the legal rationale for enhanced interrogation techniques, has declined an invitation to testify before the US Senate Judiciary Committee, committee chairman Patrick Leahy (D-VT) said Wednesday. Leahy made …

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