Bhutan introduces new constitution D. Wes Rist at 8:10 AM ET
[JURIST] The Himalayan nation of Bhutan [government website], population 530,000, released the text of a proposed new constitution over the weekend that would transform the system of government from a Constitutional Monarchy into a two-party representative democracy. Bhutan has slowly been working towards a democratic society since the current monarch, King Jigme Singye Wangchuk [Wikipedia profile], stepped down as head of the government and turned that function over to a prime minister. The proposed constitution will create a National Council selected from the national assembly that will govern the country jointly, while the King will remain as a figurehead. Bhutan Chief Justice Sonam Tobgye said that all of the nation's citizens would be given a chance to view the constitution, and suggested that a referendum for ratification was likely by the end of the year. Bhutan has set up an official constitutional website detailing the process used to arrive at the draft version. Kuensel, the nation's only newspaper, has the report of the draft constitution's impending release. Read the draft constitution [official text]. Reuters has more.
Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible, ad-free format.