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Legal news from Friday, December 21, 2007
16:12 EDT

[JURIST] The Supreme Court of Nepal [official website] Friday ordered the Nepalese government to extend gay and transgendered people the same rights and privileges as other citizens. Gay and transgendered people face heavy discrimination in conservative Nepal [JURIST news archive], where so-called "unnatural sex" is illegal and is punishable by [read more]

15:12 EDT

[JURIST] The US Central Intelligence agency (CIA) has requested that the Department of Justice [official websites] conduct an investigation into whether former CIA agent John Kiriakou illegally released classified information when he spoke to several news organizations last week [JURIST report] about CIA interrogations, officials said Thursday. In the interviews, [read more]

14:12 EDT

[JURIST] Six French nationals connected with the abortive effort by French charity Zoe's Ark [advocacy website, in French; BBC backgrounder] to airlift so-called "Darfur orphans" out of Chad [JURIST news archive] to Europe went on trial in Chad Friday, accused of kidnapping, fraud, and forgery. Zoe's Ark founder Eric Breteau [read more]

14:12 EDT

[JURIST] Philippines President Gloria Arroyo [official website; BBC profile] lauded the Philippine military for working to improve human rights during a speech Friday, but human rights activists say that the armed forces continue to engage in extrajudicial killings. Human rights advocates say almost 900 people have been killed since Arroyo [read more]

13:12 EDT

[JURIST] California will appeal the decision by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) [official website] to deny its request for a waiver [JURIST report] that would have allowed it and 16 other states following its lead to impose stricter greenhouse gas emissions standards on cars and light trucks, California Governor [read more]

13:12 EDT

[JURIST] US District Judge Henry H. Kennedy on Friday considered the merits of opening a judicial inquiry into whether the CIA's destruction of videotapes showing the interrogation of terror suspects [JURIST news archive] violated a 2005 court order. During a hearing [JURIST report] to consider an emergency motion [PDF text; [read more]

12:12 EDT

[JURIST] California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger [official website] is considering a mass release of more than 20,000 nonviolent prisoners in hopes of staving off a projected $10 billion to $14 billion budget deficit over the next two fiscal years, the Sacramento Bee reported Friday. Only prisoners with less than 20 months [read more]

11:12 EDT

[JURIST] Thailand's National Legislative Assembly passed a controversial security law Thursday, days before the country's general elections. The Internal Security Bill grants the head of the Internal Security Operations Command (ISOC) [Wikipedia backgrounder] power to bar public demonstrations, hold detainees without charge, and declare indefinite states of emergency. The original [read more]

10:12 EDT

[JURIST] The US House Select Committee on Intelligence on Thursday issued a subpoena [press release, PDF] for Jose Rodriguez, the former head of the CIA's clandestine branch who ordered the destruction of videotapes showing the interrogation of terror suspects [JURIST news archive]. The committee has also begun reviewing CIA records [read more]

10:12 EDT

[JURIST] Military prosecutors at Guantanamo Bay filed charges [PDF text] Thursday against Saudi detainee Ahmed Mohammed Ahmed Haza al Darbi was for his alleged role in a plan to bomb a ship off the coast of Yemen or in the Strait of Hormuz. Al Darbi is charged with with conspiracy [read more]

09:12 EDT

[JURIST] An Australian judge issued an interim control order Friday, placing restrictions on former Guantanamo Bay detainee David Hicks [JURIST news archive] when he is released from an Australian prison on December 29. Under the terms of the control order, Hicks will not be allowed to leave the country, must [read more]

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