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Legal news from Tuesday, June 21, 2011
by Zach Zagger

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad Tuesday granted amnesty for "crimes" committed before June 20 during the protests that began earlier this year, according to a decree published in Syrian state media. Minister of Justice Judge Tayseer Qala Awwad said the decree pardons those serving sentences who are suffering with terminal illnesses except for serious crimes such …

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by Maureen Cosgrove

A Chilean appeals court on Monday ordered the temporary suspension of a USD $10 billion hydroelectric dam project in Patagonia. HidroAysen, a private Chilean venture, seeks to build five dams whose construction was approved by the Chilean government in May. The Puerto Montt court approved three petitions challenging …

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by Zach Zagger

US President Barack Obama overrode the legal interpretations of the Department of Defense (DOD) and the Department of Justice Office of Legal Counsel in maintaining the administration's position that US forces operating in Libya did not violate the 1973 War Powers Resolution [50 USC § 1541 et seq.], the New York Times reported Monday. Pentagon …

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by Maureen Cosgrove

Former Croatian prime minister Ivo Sanader on Monday dropped his appeal of a Zagreb extradition request, thereby compelling him to face corruption charges in Croatia. Sanader's lawyers said that the former prime minister dropped the appeal after media speculation suggesting the appeal process could tarnish Croatian accession to the European Union (EU). Sanader is currently …

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by Maureen Cosgrove

A Wisconsin judge ruled on Monday that the state's domestic partnership registry does not infringe on the constitutional ban on gay marriage. Plaintiff Wisconsin Family Action challenged the Domestic Partnership Registry [Wisc. Stats. 770 text, PDF] as unconstitutional pursuant to the Marriage Amendment of Wisconsin's Constitution. Dane County Circuit Judge Daniel Moeser granted …

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by Zach Zagger

Three former Croatian police officers were arrested Monday in connection to alleged war crimes committed against ethnic Serb civilians during the Serbo-Croatian War in 1991 and 1992. Most notable among the three is Djuro Brodarac, a former police chief in the town of Sisak southeast of the capital Zagreb, who was arrested along with …

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by Maureen Cosgrove

Former Tunisian president Zine Al Abidine Ben Ali and his wife were sentenced Monday by a Tunisian court after being found guilty in absentia on charges of theft and unlawful possession of money and jewelry. The two were sentenced to 35 years in prison and fined USD $65.6 million. The sentencing came …

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