Legal news from Tuesday, July 3, 2012

[JURIST] The Constitutional Court of Romania [official website, in Romanian] on Tuesday accused Prime Minister Victor Ponta [BBC profile] and his leftist party, the Social Liberal Union (SLU), of attempting to seize control over the judiciary system. The court announced that it has alerted the European authorities [Reuters report] of … [read more]

[JURIST] Two Illinois county clerks, represented by the Thomas More Society [advocacy website], on Friday filed a motion [text, PDF] in the Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois [official website] seeking permission to defend the state's law [750 ILCS 5 materials] banning same-sex marriage [JURIST backgrounder] in two combined lawsuits … [read more]

[JURIST] US computer chip maker Intel [corporate website] on Tuesday argued before the EU General Court [official website] that the European Commission [official website] used flawed and inadequate evidence when it imposed a fine against the company in 2009. Intel had brought the challenge [text, PDF] two months after the … [read more]

[JURIST] UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon [official profile] on Tuesday called [press release] on member states to abolish capital punishment. He welcomed the trend of abolishing the death penalty [JURIST news archive] since the UN General Assembly [official website] endorsed a call for a moratorium on capital punishment in 2007. He … [read more]

[JURIST] UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon [official profile] on Tuesday called on the UN member states to establish a comprehensive arms treaty to limit the flow of conventional arms to terrorists and criminal networks. Speaking at the UN Conference on the Arms Trade Treaty [official website], the first-ever meeting of UN … [read more]

[JURIST] Prosecutors at the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) [official website] on Tuesday appealed last week's decision acquitting former Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadzic [ICTY case summary, PDF; JURIST news archive] on one of 11 charges for lack of evidence. Last week the court rejected [JURIST report] … [read more]

[JURIST] Human Rights Watch (HRW) [advocacy website] on Tuesday urged the government of Sri Lanka to end arrests and office raids of journalists [press release] who publish content critical of the government. HRW noted two recent instances where police raided offices and arrested journalists at two news agencies [press release], … [read more]

[JURIST] Human Rights Watch (HRW) [advocacy website] on Tuesday expressed concern [press release] about a proposed media law in Afghanistan that would increase government authority to regulate the press. According to HRW, the new law would place greater oversight authority in the director of the High Media Council, which would … [read more]

[JURIST] The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) [official website] ruled unanimously [press release, PDF] that the arrest and detention of Ukraine's former interior minister Yuriy Lutsenko [Aljazeera backgrounder] violated several articles of the European Convention on Human Rights [text, PDF]. The court found two violations of Article 5 Section … [read more]

[JURIST] Bahraini authorities have brought charges against 15 police officers for alleged "mistreatment of inmates in custody," according to a press release [text] by the Bahrain Information Affairs Authority (IAA) [official website]. The charges were brought after the government received 11 complaints about police activity. In the statement, Nawaf Hamza, … [read more]

[JURIST] UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon [official profile] on Thursday praised [official statement, text] the work of human rights activists for the right of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people while calling for an end to discrimination based on sexual orientation. The secretary-general's message was delivered during a Human Rights … [read more]

[JURIST] A judge for the US District Court for the Southern District of Florida [official website] on Friday permanently enjoined [order, PDF] a Florida law that barred doctors from discussing the dangers of gun ownership with patients. Judge Marcia Cooke held that the Firearm Owners' Privacy Act (FOPA) [text] violates … [read more]

[JURIST] The US Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit [official website] has upheld [opinion, PDF] a South Carolina program allowing public high school students to earn credit for religious courses taken off campus during the school day. The program was challenged by students and parents at a school that … [read more]

[JURIST] Greek police exhibit a pattern of using excessive force and violence against demonstrators and administrative detainees, including migrants, Amnesty International (AI) [advocacy website] reported [text, PDF] Tuesday. AI criticized Greek authorities for referring to instances of police violence as "isolated incidents" and called on the government to take further … [read more]

[JURIST] French authorities said Tuesday that they have arrested a suspected terrorist alleged to have ties to al-Qaeda [JURIST news archive]. Little information has been revealed about the suspect except that he was born in Tunisia in 1977 and resided in the French city of Toulon. The nation's prosecution office … [read more]

[JURIST] Syrian authorities have been maintaining secret detention facilities to hold and torture prisoners, Human Rights Watch (HRW) [advocacy website] reported [text, PDF; press release] Tuesday. The report, compiled based on accounts from victims and former military and intelligence officials, concludes that Syria has maintained at least 27 secret facilities … [read more]

[JURIST] The UN Working Group on discrimination against women in law and practice [official website] released a report [text, PDF] Monday calling for a focus on advancing women's rights during political transitions. The group's priorities are discrimination against women in political and public life and discrimination in the economic and … [read more]

[JURIST] UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay [official profile; JURIST news archive] renewed her call Monday to the Security Council to refer the situation in Syria to the International Criminal Court (ICC) [official website; JURIST backgrounder]. She stressed the need to address the serious human rights violations [UN … [read more]

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