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Legal news from Monday, December 26, 2005
16:12 EDT

[JURIST] Russian prosecutors leading the probe into the September 2004 Beslan school siege [BBC report, MosNews report] issued a report Monday concluding that Chechen terrorists, not Russian authorities, were to blame for the deaths of 330 people, mostly children. Another 783 were wounded. Relatives of the victims have blamed the [read more]

15:12 EDT

[JURIST] Khalil Dulaimi, chief Iraqi defense counsel for Saddam Hussein, told the Jordanian newspaper Al Arab Al Yawm [media website, in Arabic] in a report published Monday that Saddam Hussein's half brother, Barzan Ibrahim [Trial Watch profile] had been offered a high Iraqi government position by the US in exchange [read more]

14:12 EDT

[JURIST] In a move to bolster its democratic credentials, the Council of the European Union [official website], the EU's senior decision-making body, will begin to debate and vote more often in public in the new year. Television cameras will be allowed to capture a broad range of council activities beginning [read more]

11:12 EDT

[JURIST] The Supreme Court of Chile [official website, in Spanish] on Monday denied the appeal of former dictator Gen. Augusto Pinochet [BBC profile; JURIST news archive] on human rights charges, ruling 3-2 in support of a lower appeals court decision [JURIST report] that his mild dementia, diabetes, and arthritis do [read more]

11:12 EDT

[JURIST] Former Bosnian Serb general and indicted war criminal Ratko Mladic [ICTY case backgrounder; JURIST news archive] is reported to be discussing his surrender with the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY) [official website; JURIST news archive], according to an article Monday in the UK Independent, citing a [read more]

10:12 EDT

[JURIST] Cambodian opposition leader Sam Rainsy [party profile] said Monday he will seek a royal pardon from King Norodom Sihanouk [official website] rather than appeal the 18-month sentence he was given last Thursday following an in absentia conviction for two counts of defaming political leaders. Rainsy was found guilty of [read more]

10:12 EDT

[JURIST] The first war crimes trial in the history of Afghanistan began Monday in Kabul as a former Afghan intelligence chief faced charges of authorizing the arrest, torture, and mass killings of hundreds of opponents of the country's Communist government [Wikipedia backgrounder] in the 1980s. Assadullah Sarwari has been imprisoned [read more]

09:12 EDT

[JURIST] State media in China said Monday that a revised Chinese law submitted to the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress (NPC) [Wikipedia backgrounder] calls for prison sentences of up to three years and heavy fines for doctors and other health workers who aid in telling the gender of [read more]

09:12 EDT

[JURIST] Russian military prosecutors said Monday that they had dropped charges against former Ukrainian Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko [personal website; BBC profile], accused of offering bribes to Russian Defense Department officials [JURIST report] while managing Ukraine's state-run gas company. The warrant for Tymoshenko was suspended while she served as prime [read more]

09:12 EDT

[JURIST] Former US Secretary of State Colin Powell [BBC profile] has defended the Bush administration's eavesdropping [JURIST report; JURIST news archive] on phone and e-mail communications to prevent terrorism. Though Powell conceded in an interview [transcript] with ABC's This Week that a major controversy over presidential powers could easily have [read more]

08:12 EDT

[JURIST] Following more allegations [JURIST report] Friday that Saddam Hussein has been tortured by his American captors, lawyers for the ousted ruler have asked his Baghdad court for an independent investigation. Chief Iraqi lawyer Khalil Dulaimi said Sunday that Saddam has expressed doubts about his ability to properly defends charges [read more]

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