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Legal news from Wednesday, February 15, 2012
by Jerry Votava

An indictment against General Ilker Basbug was accepted by the Istanbul 13th High Criminal Court on Wednesday, after Basbug's request to have his case heard by the Supreme State Council, a faction of Turkey's Constitutional Court, was denied. The request was denied because the charges faced by the general are related …

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by Katherine Getty

Amnesty International (AI) released a statement Tuesday condemning recent anti-gay actions by the government of Uganda. The statement came in response to a number of adverse actions against lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) activists in the nation. Minister for Ethics and Integrity Simon Lokodo shut down an LGBT workshop on Tuesday by advocacy …

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by Rebecca DiLeonardo

The US District Court for District of Colorado ruled on Monday that tribal sovereign immunity applies to online money-lending sites. The court ruled that the defendants, members of several Native American tribes, did not waive all sovereign immunity claims when their online business consented to private suit and could not be held in …

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by Max Slater

Mullah Krekar, the founder of the Iraqi Kurdish Islamist group Ansar Al Islam, pleaded not guilty before a Norwegian district court on Wednesday to charges of condoning suicide bombings and making death threats against politicians. The prosecutor in the case, Marit Bakkevig, declared that Krekar, who has been living in Norway since 1991, broke Norwegian anti-terror laws …

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by Max Slater

A military judge on Tuesday denied the request of suspected USS Cole bomber and Guantanamo inmate Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri to question Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh as a witness in his case. The judge, US Army Colonel James Pohl, did not give a rationale for his ruling, saying only that …

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by Jennie Ryan

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad on Wednesday ordered a referendum on a new constitution. The new constitution reportedly omits a clause [RFE/RL report] in the old document that describes the ruling Ba'ath Party as the "leader of the nation and society." The expressed intent of that omission is to open the country up to a …

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by Rebecca DiLeonardo

The Colorado Senate Judiciary Committee heard testimony on Wednesday in consideration of a proposed bill [SB12-002 text, PDF] that would grant same-sex couples the right to civil unions. Same-sex couples traveled to Denver to testify on behalf of the bill. The bill explicitly provides same-sex couples with many of the benefits held …

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by Jennie Ryan

The UN envoy for Children and Armed Conflict on Monday urged all nations to ratify a treaty protocol that would criminalize recruitment of child soldiers and set the minimum age of recruitment at 18. The Optional Protocol on the Involvement of Children in Armed Conflict of the Convention on the Rights of the Child …

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by Jerry Votava

The Ontario Superior Court on Monday issued an opinion refusing to impose a mandatory minimum sentence established by the Canadian federal government for firearm possession, declaring the guideline unconstitutional. Justice Anne Molloy ruled in the case of Leroy Smickle, who was convicted of possessing a loaded handgun. The Canadian government stipulates [95(1) of the Criminal Code …

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by Katherine Getty

The Virginia House of Delegates passed a bill Tuesday that defines life as beginning at conception. The bill passed 66-32 moving the state toward banning abortion. The bill, introduced by Rep. Bob Marshall (R), says: "Life of each human being begins at conception" and that "Unborn …

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