Legal news from Thursday, February 14, 2008
19:02 EDT

[JURIST] A Chinese land rights activist arrested for circulating a petition declaring "we want human rights, not the Olympics" will be tried next week, according to Thursday media reports. Yang Chunlin [Amnesty profile] was arrested in July 2007 and charged with "inciting subversion of state power" after obtaining over 10,000 [read more]

18:02 EDT

[JURIST] Chadian President Idriss Deby [official website, in French; BBC profile] Thursday declared a state of emergency [transcript, in French] throughout Chad [government website; JURIST news archive], citing increased violence between government forces and rebels in the capital city of N'Djamena. The order bans most public meetings, imposes a curfew, [read more]

17:02 EDT

[JURIST] US District Judge Richard W. Roberts Thursday extended the deadline [order, PDF] for the government to comply with an order [PDF text, JURIST report] issued last month requiring it to submit a report to the court by February 14 detailing why the CIA destroyed videotapes showing the interrogation of [read more]

17:02 EDT

[JURIST] Kenyan President Mwai Kibaki [official profile] and opposition candidate Raila Odinga [campaign profile] Thursday agreed to write a new constitution, an agreement that could put an end to the violence that erupted in the wake of January's disputed presidential election [JURIST report]. A spokesman for former UN Secretary-General Kofi [read more]

16:02 EDT

[JURIST] The US House of Representatives voted Thursday to hold former White House legal counsel Harriet Miers and White House Chief of Staff Joshua Bolten [official profiles] in contempt [H Res 979 materials] for failing to cooperate with an inquiry into the US Attorneys firing scandal [JURIST news archive]. Members [read more]

16:02 EDT

[JURIST] Mexico's National Human Rights Commission (CNDH) [official website, in Spanish] is not doing enough to promote remedies and reforms needed to end abuses, Human Rights Watch (HRW) [advocacy website] said in a report [text; press release] released Wednesday. After examining the commission's work on more than 40 human rights [read more]

14:02 EDT

[JURIST] Acting head of the US Department of Justice (DOJ) Office of Legal Counsel [official website] Steven G. Bradbury testified at a US House Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights, and Civil Liberties hearing [subcommittee materials] Thursday that the use of waterboarding [JURIST news archive] has been barred by [read more]

13:02 EDT

[JURIST] Argentinean police Wednesday arrested retired naval officer Luis Emilio Sosa in Buenos Aires in connection with the August 1972 massacre of 16 leftist guerrillas on a military base in the southern city of Trelew [government website]. Two other former officers, Paccagnini Ruben and Emilio Del Real, were also arrested [read more]

11:02 EDT

[JURIST] US Rep. Edward Markey (D-MA) [official website] said Wednesday that he has introduced a bill [press release; Markey summary, PDF] in Congress aimed at guaranteeing unfettered access to the Internet and limiting the ability of Internet providers to restrict users' access. Markey said that the Internet Freedom Preservation Act [read more]

10:02 EDT

[JURIST] The US Marine Corps has ordered Lance Cpl. Stephen Tatum [advocacy profile] to testify against Staff Sgt. Frank Wuterich [advocacy website] about the killing of 24 Iraqi civilians at Haditha [USMC timeline; JURIST news archive] in November 2005, according to Wednesday media reports. Both men currently face court-martial for [read more]

10:02 EDT

[JURIST] The US District Court for the Northern District of California dismissed a lawsuit [complaint, PDF; case materials] against Jeppesen Dataplan [corporate website] Wednesday, ruling in favor of the US government's motion to dismiss on state secret grounds. The US Department of Justice had argued that the lawsuit, brought by [read more]

09:02 EDT

[JURIST] Prisons and courts in Iraq [JURIST news archive] have been overwhelmed with an influx of detainees corresponding to the surge in American troops in Iraq over the last year, American advisers visiting Iraq said on Wednesday. Iraq's prison system does not have nearly enough beds to house all of [read more]

08:02 EDT

[JURIST] The Iranian Guardian Council [official website], the upper parliamentary chamber composed of twelve members, on Wednesday reinstated more than 280 parliamentary candidates in preparation for next month's parliamentary elections. Last month, Iran's Interior Ministry banned over 2,000 moderates and reformists from running in the March parliamentary election. Among those [read more]

07:02 EDT

[JURIST] The US Senate Judiciary Committee held a hearing [committee materials] Wednesday on the state secrets privilege in preparation for debate on the State Secrets Protection Act [S 2533 summary], a bill introduced by committee leaders "to enact a safe, fair, and responsible state secrets privilege." The bill, introduced by [read more]

05:02 EDT

[JURIST] A European Commission [official website] official on Wednesday sharply criticized as "unacceptable" American attempts to negotiate with newer EU member states, reportedly offering to allow visa-free travel in exchange for extra air passenger data. Directorate-General for Justice, Freedom and Security Jonathan Faull [official profile, PDF] said American negotiations with [read more]

05:02 EDT

[JURIST] World Trade Organization (WTO) [official website] judges ruled against China Wednesday in a case brought by the US, EU, and Canada [WTO dispute summaries] over China's taxation scheme for imported car parts. The complaint alleged that China was taxing auto parts imported from those countries at the same rate [read more]

04:02 EDT

[JURIST] The US government plans to approve the first stretch of "virtual fencing" for border control, which will run for 28 miles along the US-Mexico border [GlobalSecurity backgrounder] southwest of Tucson, Arizona, Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff [official profile] said Wednesday during a congressional hearing [CSH materials]. The virtual fence, [read more]

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