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Legal news from Thursday, November 7, 2013
by Kimberly Bennett

The US Senate on Thursday approved a bill by a vote of 64 to 32 outlawing workplace discrimination against gay, bisexual and transgender Americans. The Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) outlaws workplace discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity. The ENDA expands upon the Civil Rights Act of 1964's Title VII protections, which make it …

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by Laura Klein Mullen

The Florida Supreme Court ruled Thursday that a woman who donated an egg to her lesbian partner has parental rights to the child they conceived. The child in question was born to the couple in 2004. The women had agreed to conceive a child with the assistance of reproductive technology. The donor and the birth …

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by Amy Mathieu

Vietnamese authorities are using repressive laws, unfair trials and harsh prison conditions against activists who oppose the ruling Communist government, according to a report released Thursday by Amnesty International (AI). The report claims that those arrested include bloggers, labor and land rights activists, human rights defenders, and religious followers. Vietnam is a member …

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by Kimberly Bennett

The US on Thursday became the first country to ratify the Minamata Convention, which seeks to bring down emissions and releases of mercury, prompting praise from the UN Environment Programme (UNEP). There are currently 93 signatories to the convention, but the US is the only country to have ratified the agreement, giving the …

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by Taylor Gillan

The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) ruled Thursday that the exclusion of same-sex couples from civil unions under Greek law is a violation of the European Convention on Human Rights. The court held that the ban violates Article 8 (the right to respect for private and family life) and Article 14 …

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by Stephen Adelgren

UN Special Rapporteur on violence against women Rashida Manjoo and the chairperson of the Working Group on the issue of discrimination against women in law and in practice Frances Raday on Wednesday urged the Sudanese government to stop the practice of threatening women with flogging for "honour-related offences." According to Manjoo, the punishment is …

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by Lauren Laing

The European Court of Justice (ECJ) ruled Thursday that gay people who live in African countries where they could be persecuted for their sexuality have grounds for asylum in the EU. The decision came after the Netherlands asked the ECJ for advice regarding three Sierra Leone, Uganda and Senegal citizens who were seeking asylum. Dutch authorities …

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by Sung Un Kim

Spanish officials on Wednesday told the UN that they will not reexamine the state's action during the 1936-39 Spanish Civil War and the Franco era. In 1977, Spain enacted a law that granted amnesty for political crimes committed during these periods. Spanish officials testified before the UN Committee on Enforced Disappearances (CED) that …

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by Lauren Laing

A military judge on Wednesday ordered the US government to submit reports on Guantanamo Bay prison conditions and removed restrictions on communications between lawyers and detainees in a case involving five Guantanamo prisoners related to the 9/11 terrorist attack. Army Col. James Pohl will review more than 10 years' worth of reports …

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by Sung Un Kim

Human Rights Watch (HRW) on Wednesday criticized Hungary for failing to protect the rights of female victims of domestic abuse. The report claims that women who were abused by their partners face difficulties in obtaining protection and other related services. HRW found that traditional social views of women's roles and the acceptance of domestic violence …

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