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Legal News
6 Nov 2015
by Alexis Wheeler

The Guatemalan Congress [official website, in Spanish] on Thursday approved legislation to raise to legal age for marriage to 18. The minimum legal age for marriage had been 14 for girls and 16 for boys. An exception was made so that girls who are at least 16 can still marry … [read more]

Professional Commentary
6 Jul 2015
by Solomon Sacco of Amnesty International
edited by Marisa Rodrigues

JURIST Guests Netsanet Belay and Solomon Sacco of Amnesty International discuss two recent cases in which states have used diplomatic immunity as a pretext for not executing arrest warrants for visiting public officials who are wanted for crimes under international law, thereby upholding impunity for serious crimes.... Two cases in … [read more]

Legal News
5 Jun 2015
by Sarah Boehme

The UN torture prevention body on Wednesday urged the Philippines to tackle urgent prison overcrowding [press release] issues and improve independent monitoring of detention facilities. During a visit by the six-member delegation, the Sub-Committee on the Prevention of Torture (SPT) [official website] presented its confidential preliminary observations to the Filipino … [read more]

Legal News
17 Apr 2015
by Emelina Perez

[JURIST] Malawi enacted the Marriage, Divorce and Family Relations Act of 2015 (Marriage Act) on Wednesday, a move that Human Rights Watch (HRW) [advocacy website] welcomed [press release] as "an important step toward preventing child marriage." The act was passed by Parliament in February and approved [BBC report] by President … [read more]

Legal News
17 Apr 2015
by Taylor Brailey

[JURIST] At the 13th UN Congress on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice [official website] on Thursday, the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) [official website] announced [press release] that prison overcrowding has reached "epidemic proportions" worldwide. "Prison overcrowding can also be considered as a symptom of a malfunctioning justice … [read more]

Legal News
30 Jan 2015
by Valerie Howell

[JURIST] A group of three UN special rapporteurs urged [press release] the international community on Friday to provide humanitarian aid and funding to Malawi after it experienced the worst flooding in recent history. Malawi habitually experiences varying degrees of flooding that requires action by emergency response units of fluctuating size. … [read more]

Legal News
18 Jan 2015
by Dominic Yobbi

[JURIST] The Indonesian government on Saturday executed six people convicted of drug trafficking. Ignoring last minute diplomatic pleas by foreign leaders, the six drug smugglers, including five foreigners, were executed by firing squad shortly after midnight. The foreign convicts were from Nigeria, Malawi, Vietnam, the Netherlands and Brazil. The executions … [read more]

Legal News
18 Jul 2014
by Dominic Yobbi

[JURIST] The French Senate [official website, in French] adopted a law [materials, in French] Thursday calling for increased use of probation and other measures to reduce prison overcrowding. France's prison system has become increasingly overcrowded in past years, and it reportedly does little to discourage reoffending. The population of these … [read more]

Legal News
24 May 2014
by G. Redd

[JURIST] Malawi President Joyce Banda [BBC profile] announced [press release] Saturday that, due to extreme irregularities in the voting process, she is nullifying the national tripartite results for the presidential, parliamentary and local elections. President Banda cited as her authority Section 88(2) [text, PDF] of the Malawi Constitution, which states … [read more]

Legal News
7 Mar 2014
by Matthew Pomy

[JURIST] Human Rights Watch (HRW) [advocacy website] called on Malawi to put an end to the practice of child and forced marriage in a report [text, PDF] released on Thursday. The report was compiled based on interviews with 80 girls and women in six districts in southern and central Malawi. … [read more]

Legal News
21 Jan 2014
by Stephen Adelgren

[JURIST] Malawi's high court [official website] began hearing a petition on Monday by human rights group Centre for the Development of People (CEDEP) [advocacy website] challenging the jail sentences of three convicted gays and seeking to overturn laws that criminalize homosexuality in the country. The three men, Amon Champyuni, Mathew … [read more]

Legal News
15 Jan 2014
by Samuel Franklin

[JURIST] UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay [official profile] on Tuesday criticized Nigeria's new law on the prohibition of same-sex marriage, calling the legislation a direct violation of basic, universal human rights. Earlier this month [press release] Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathon signed the Same Sex Marriage (Prohibition) Bill … [read more]

Legal News
13 Jan 2014
by Daniel Mullen

[JURIST] Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan [official profile] signed the Same Sex Marriage Prohibition Act into law on Monday, prompting condemnation throughout the international community. The law bans same-sex marriage and criminalizes [AP report] homosexual associations, societies and meetings and carries a punishment of up to 14 years imprisonment. Though sodomy … [read more]

Legal News
3 Oct 2013
by Theresa Donovan

[JURIST] The Indonesian Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) on Wednesday arrested the chief justice of the country's constitutional court for allegedly accepting over USD $250,000 in bribes. Akil Mochtar was elected as chief justice for a five-year term which began in August, and the money confiscated from Mochtar's house was said … [read more]

Professional Commentary
11 Sep 2013

JURIST Guest Columnist Drew F. Cohen, a clerk for the Constitutional Court of South Africa, discusses the consequences of the Southern African Development Community endorsing Zimbabwe president Robert Mugabe's re-election...Despite requests from Botswana to open an investigation into voter fraud, southern African leaders closed ranks several weeks ago at a … [read more]

Legal News
8 Aug 2013
by Endia Vereen

[JURIST] The Italian Senate on Thursday approved a measure to ease some of the worst prison overcrowding in Europe by cutting pre-trial detentions and using alternative punishments for minor offenses. In January the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) [official website] ordered Italy to address the problem [JURIST report] within … [read more]

Legal News
27 Jun 2013
by Peter Snyder

[JURIST] The UN Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions [official website] Christof Heyns on Wednesday condemned [press release] the Nigerian government for the alleged execution of four men in the State of Edo [official website]. Heyns voiced his concern "that capital punishment appears to have been imposed without … [read more]

Legal News
31 May 2013
by Lauren Laing

[JURIST] The Nigerian House of Representatives [official website] on Thursday approved a bill making same-sex marriage a crime punishable by a maximum of 14 years in prison. Further, any person who witnesses, aids, or abets same-sex marriages; operates gay organizations; or engages in same-sex public displays of affection could be … [read more]

Legal News
28 Mar 2013
by Elizabeth LaForgia

[JURIST] The UN Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial executions Christof Heyns [official profile] on Monday urged [statement] the Indonesian government to restrict the use of capital punishment to comply with their international human rights obligations. On March 14, Malawian national Adami Wilson was executed by firing squad after being convicted on … [read more]

Legal News
25 Mar 2013
by Benjamin Minegar

[JURIST] Zambian authorities on Monday arrested former president Rupiah Banda on allegations that he misappropriated over USD $11 million during his three-year tenure in office. Banda allegedly channelled money from the sale of Nigerian crude oil [Bloomberg report] into a private account instead of the nation's treasury. The Zambian Parliament … [read more]

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