Bangladesh executes two opposition leaders for 1971 war crimes

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Bangladesh executed two opposition leaders on Nov. 22 for war crimes committed during the 1971 war to break away from Pakistan, a senior police official said, in a move likely to draw an angry reaction from supporters. Hurriyet DHAKA  – ReutersIslamist opposition leader Ali Ahsan Mohammad Mujahid and Salauddin Quader Chowdhury, a former legislator from former premier Khaleda Zia’s Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP), were hanged shortly after President Abdul Hamid rejected their appeals late on Nov. 21 for clemency. “Both ... Read More »

Bobby Boye sentenced to six years in federal prison

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On 15 October, a U.S. Federal Court ordered former Timor-Leste legal adviser Bobby Boye to serve six years in prison and repay $3.51 million dollars to Timor-Leste. Although the plea deal effectively ends the criminal case against Boye, many questions remain unanswered regarding the full costs of his crimes to Timor-Leste, as well as who else may have been involved in his schemes. We hope that investigations proceed. In 2010, Norway hired the Nigerian-American “tax expert” to help Timor-Leste’s Ministry ... Read More »

Euro court rules in favor of Turkish politician in ‘Armenian genocide denial’ case

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The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) in Strasbourg ruled on Oct. 15 that Switzerland violated Turkish politician Doğu Perinçek’s right to freedom of speech. Hurriyet – STRASBOURG The case concerned a fine imposed on Perinçek for a speech he gave in the country in which he denied that the mass deportation of Armenians in Anatolia in 1915 amounted to genocide. In its ruling, the 17-judge ECHR Grand Chamber “concluded that it had not been necessary, in a democratic society, ... Read More »

Australia approves controversial Carmichael coal mine

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Australia’s government has given its approval for one of the world’s biggest coal mines to be built by India’s Adani Mining in Queensland. BBC – In August, a court temporarily blocked the project because of environmental concerns. But the approval has now been granted subject to “36 of the strictest conditions in Australian history” environment minister Greg Hunt said. Critics say the decision was “grossly irresponsible”. The approval was signed on Wednesday by Mr Hunt and follows a long running ... Read More »

When punishment doesn’t fit the crime

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New research reveals traumatic brain injury patients struggle with discipline in social, family and work life Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago @EurekAlertAAAS New research finds people with traumatic brain injuries (TBI) –such as those incurred from violent accidents or combat — are more prone to misjudge when faced with situations involving dispute or requiring discipline. The study, led in part by Dr. Jordan Grafman at the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago and published this month in Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience (SCAN), ... Read More »

Cruel, or just unusual?

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Saudi Arabian justice A look at Saudi Arabia’s Islamic laws and the judges who apply those laws The Economist – Riyadh | From the print edition NEXT to Afghanistan, no country imposes tougher Islamic laws than Saudi Arabia. The resort to beheading, hand-chopping and whipping fuels tabloid gore and human-rights outrage. Yet, cruel as the system often is, the deeper trouble may lie less with the letter of the law than with the obtuse, opaque and clumsy ways it is ... Read More »

The High Court has confirmed what we already knew: human genes are not inventions

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Opinion The company Myriad had intellectual property rights for 20 years in Australia over genetic material the High Court now recognises it never invented. This won’t happen again, writes Luigi Palombi. ABC – TheDRUM – By Luigi Palombi Almost two and a half years ago, I wrote a piece for The Drum on the subject of the patenting of human genes. Justice Nicholas of the Federal Court of Australia had just handed down his decision in the case of D’Arcy ... Read More »

What more can Australia do to end the death penalty worldwide?

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Foreign Minister Julie Bishop has initiated a parliamentary inquiry into Australia’s efforts in campaigning against the death penalty. The Joint Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade has sought submissions with regard to: … reviewing how Australia currently engages internationally to promote abolition of the death penalty, and further steps Australia could take to advocate for worldwide abolition. This inquiry is a progressive response to the executions of Australians Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran in Indonesia this year. The ... Read More »

US state executes multiple murderer from El Salvador

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The state of Virginia late Oct.1 executed multiple murderer Alfredo Prieto, rejecting last minute court appeals from lawyers for the Salvadoran immigrant. Hurriyet – WASHINGTON – Agence France-Presse Prison officials said in a statement that Prieto, who was put to death by lethal injection, was pronounced dead at 9:17 pm (0117 GMT Friday). His final words, they said, were: “Let’s get this over with.” Prieto had been convicted of or linked to nine killings across the United States. His attorneys ... Read More »

Why the West turns a blind eye to Saudi Arabia’s brutality


Opinion Saudi Arabia inflicts punishments every bit as obscene as those enforced by the Islamic State. But it’s also a reliable and convenient ally, and that matters more to the West than the life of a democracy protester, writes Jeff Sparrow. ABC – By Jeff Sparrow One of the iconic photos from the presidency of the second George Bush shows Dubya at his Texas ranch, holding hands with the Saudi king Abdullah bin Abdulaziz. The image encapsulates the West’s longstanding ... Read More »

Climate change refugee faces deportation

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A man who for years has argued to be allowed to stay with his family in New Zealand because of climate change in his homeland is to be deported. SBS – Source: AAP A Kiribati man who made an unsuccessful bid to become the world’s first climate change refugee will apply to the Human Rights Committee of the United Nations as he awaits deportation from New Zealand. Ioane Teitiota has for years argued his family’s health was at risk if ... Read More »

First-ever civil drone conviction in Britain handed down in landmark case

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RT – A 42-year-old man has been convicted of drone related offences after flying a drone over football stadia and through busy and congested areas of central London. The conviction is the first prosecution of its kind in the UK. Nigel Wilson, from Nottingham, pleaded guilty to seven offences in breach of the Air Navigation Order 2009 and has been forced to pay a fine of £1,800 (US$2,760). He was also issued with a Criminal Behavior Order banning him from ... Read More »

Federal Circuit Court judge Alexander Street accused of bias after rejecting hundreds of migration cases

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A Federal Circuit Court judge from one of Australia’s most famous legal families has been accused of apprehended bias after he rejected more than 250 appeals in migration cases in six months. ABC – By the National Reporting Team’s Natasha Robinson Rulings of Judge Alexander “Sandy” Street have been subject to several appeals in two recent cases in the Full Federal Court, which has strongly criticised the newly appointed Federal Circuit Court judge. In a highly unusual move, applicants have ... Read More »

Papua New Guinea’s supreme court halts asylum seeker deportations

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Exclusive: immigration department will defy highest court in the land if it continues forcing men held on Manus to return to their countries of origin The Guardian – Ben Doherty, @bendohertycorro Papua New Guinea’s supreme court has stepped in to halt all deportations of asylum seekers back to their home countries, ordering an interim injunction late on Tuesday to stop forcible removals. Two Iranian asylum seekers have been sent back from the Australian-run detention centre in Manus province to Tehran ... Read More »

US launches secret bid to stop release of hunger-striking Guantánamo detainee

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Objection to freeing Tariq Ba Odah, who is 56% of his ideal body weight, comes as Obama administration fights to stop detainees seeking freedom in federal courts The Guardian – Spencer Ackerman in New York @attackerman In an extremely rare legal manoeuvre, the Obama administration has challenged a legal request to free a hunger-striking Guantánamo Bay detainee entirely in secret. US officials said the objection to freeing Tariq Ba Odah, who is undernourished to the point of starvation, and the ... Read More »

Scott Morrison loses High Court case against a refugee

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Former immigration minister Scott Morrison’s decision to refuse a Pakistani refugee a protection visa on a “national interest” basis has failed in the High Court. The Sydney Morning Herald – Sarah Whyte, Health and Indigenous affairs correspondent The court has unanimously found that the man, who arrived by boat on Christmas Island in 2012, be granted a permanent protection visa, which had been previously refused by a delegate of the Minister. Mr Morrison had argued that because the man had ... Read More »