Legal news from Monday, October 26, 2009
15:10 EDT

[JURIST] Sri Lankan Minister for Disaster Management and Human Rights Mahinda Samarasinghe [official profile] announced Monday that President Mahinda Rajapaksa [official website] has decided to appoint an independent committee to investigate allegations of human rights violations in that nation. "Incidents During the Recent Conflicts in Sri Lanka" [text], a US [read more]

14:10 EDT

[JURIST] Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu [official profile] on Monday announced the formation of a task force to respond to the Goldstone Report [text, PDF], which accused both Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) [official website] and Hamas [GlobalSecurity backgrounder] fighters of war crimes during last winter's Operation Cast Lead [Global Security [read more]

14:10 EDT

[JURIST] A prominent opposition leader and human rights activist in Russia's southern province of Ingushetia [official website, in Russian; BBC backgrounder], Maksharip Aushev, was reportedly shot dead Sunday while traveling on a highway in the North Caucasus region of Kabardino-Balkaria. According to Russian media, the unidentified gunmen fired more than [read more]

13:10 EDT

[JURIST] Uruguayan voters on Sunday rejected an initiative to end the country's Expiry Law [text, in Spanish], which grants amnesty to military officials accused of human rights violations during the country’s 1973-1985 dictatorship. With approximately 48 percent voting in support, the referendum [text, PDF, in Spanish] to overturn the law [read more]

13:10 EDT

[JURIST] The Supreme Court of Hawaii [official website] announced [order, PDF; press release] Friday that state courts will be closed two Fridays each month beginning in November 2009. Chief Justice Ronald Moon [official profile] found that the difficult decision [Honolulu Star-Bulletin report] was necessary due to the financial conditions that [read more]

12:10 EDT

[JURIST] The International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) [official website] on Monday temporarily adjourned proceedings against former Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadzic [case materials; JURIST news archive] after Karadzic failed to appear for the opening of his war crimes trial. Karadzic announced last week that he planned to [read more]

11:10 EDT

[JURIST] An Ontario law [text] banning the use of handheld devices while driving took effect [press release] Monday, outlawing text messaging and talking on a cellphone while behind the wheel. The ban makes it illegal to use any handheld wireless communication devices but also extends to any device with a [read more]

10:10 EDT

[JURIST] The Seoul Central District court on Monday found Dr. Hwang Woo-Suk [BBC profile] guilty of embezzling research funds and bioethics violations. Hwang was acquitted on fraud charges and given a two-year suspended sentence instead of the four-year sentence requested by the prosecution. Hwang, who worked for the Seoul National [read more]

10:10 EDT

[JURIST] Former Uruguay military dictator and army chief Gregorio Alvarez was convicted of crimes against humanity and sentenced to 25 years in prison Thursday for his role in 37 homicides during the country's 1973-1985 military rule [LOC backgrounder]. Alvarez, who served as commander in chief and later as de facto [read more]

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