Law & Order

DLA Piper teams up with refugee advocates for access to justice

Global firm DLA Piper has partnered with the Southern Migrant and Refugee Centre to deliver its first Australia-based Know Your Rights Legal Empowerment Program. Jerome Doraisamy Lawyers Weekly DLA Piper‘s Know Your Rights program has been successfully delivered across a number of cities to date including Bangkok, Amsterdam, Paris, Vienna, Hamburg, Cologne, Brussels, Milan, Luxembourg and Rome, and has now come Down Under. It is a “signature part” of the firm’s global pro bono practice that focuses on access to ... Read More »

Charting a Way Forward in Sudan’s Unfinished Transition

Omar al-Bashir is out as president of Sudan, but protesters suspect that the military-led transition is a game of musical chairs. ICG A new curfew raises the spectre of bloodshed. International actors should press vigorously for civilian leadership of a process that must promise further-reaching change. Late at night on 10 April, after defying the most sustained protest movement in Sudan’s modern history for months, Omar al-Bashir finally lost his hold on power. In an early afternoon announcement on state ... Read More »

Julian Assange Q+A: WikiLeaks founder arrested in London

Julian Assange, founder of WikiLeaks, has been arrested in London and charged with conspiracy to commit computer intrusion over his alleged role in the leaking of classified United States government documents. Gbenga Oduntan The Conversation Assange has already been found guilty of failing to surrender British police, who took him from the Ecuadorian embassy, where he has been living for nearly seven years, having claimed asylum there. Here’s what we know so far. Why was Assange in the Ecuadorian embassy ... Read More »

Big win for women’s reproductive freedom, but still a long way to go

This week saw a big win for women’s rights in Australia in the High Court. It is an historic step forward in the long journey for reproductive freedom for women in Australia. It’s also a timely reminder of how far we have to go. Adrianne Walters The Age In the 1970s, my nan, as a member of the Women’s Electoral Lobby, pushed for the decriminalisation of abortion. She knew what it felt like to discover a pregnancy and be powerless ... Read More »

‘A dangerous precedent’: Julian Assange’s lawyer hits out at his arrest

The founder of WikiLeaks, Australian Julian Assange, has been arrested after he was kicked out of the Ecuadorian embassy in London. AFP – SBS WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange’s seven-year hideout in Ecuador’s London embassy ended on Thursday when British police dragged him out and arrested him on an extradition request from the United States to face hacking charges. Footage shot by the Russian video news agency Ruptly showed Mr Assange – his worn face framed by a bushy white beard ... Read More »

South Korea abortion ban ‘unconstitutional’

South Korea’s ban on abortion has been ruled unconstitutional in a historic court decision. BBC The country’s constitutional court ordered that the law must be revised by the end of 2020. Under the 1953 ban, women who procured abortions could be fined and imprisoned, except in cases of rape or risk to their health. South Korea is one of the few developed countries to criminalise abortion. The abortion law was reviewed after a challenge from a female doctor who said ... Read More »

Dog whistles, regional visas and wage theft – immigration policy is again an election issue

Immigration policy will be a major issue in the 2019 federal election. We know this because immigration has featured significantly at every Australian election since the 2001 “children overboard” election. Jock Collins The Conversation David Marr and Marian Wilkinson argued in their 2003 book, Dark Victory, that willingness to play the race card in relation to boat people was a decisive factor in John Howard’s election victory. For Tony Abbott, “Stop the boats” was a major campaign theme when the ... Read More »

Balakot air strike: Pakistan shows off disputed site on eve of India election

The authorities in Pakistan have allowed foreign media and defence attachés to visit the site of a disputed Indian air strike in February. BBC They were given access to an Islamic school in Balakot, where Indian media say militants were killed in retaliation for an attack in Kashmir. The large building appeared to be fully intact and the Pakistani army denied it had been used as a terror camp. The visit to the school was held on the eve of ... Read More »

Donald Trump fumes as judge blocks policy of returning asylum seekers to Mexico

US President Donald Trump has lashed out over a judge blocking his administration’s policy of returning asylum seekers to Mexico while they apply to legally stay in the United States, saying the ruling is “unfair to the US”. ABC Under the policy, which was launched in January, migrants are forced to return back over the border while they wait for an immigration court to hear their cases. Judge Richard Seeborg in San Francisco this week granted a request on behalf ... Read More »

This Landmark Case Will Decide Whether Aboriginal Australians Who Aren’t Citizens Can Be Deported

Lawyers for Daniel Love and Brendan Thoms argue they can’t be considered “alien” under the Australian Constitution. Hannah Ryan BuzzFeed Two Aboriginal men who were held in immigration detention will ask the High Court to find that Aboriginal non-citizens cannot be deported, in a case one expert describes as “landmark”. In submissions filed with Australia’s highest court last week, lawyers for Daniel Love and Brendan Thoms argue that the government cannot deport an Aboriginal person who is not a citizen ... Read More »

The oil and gas of Lebanon tempts the appetite of its neighbours

With three fronts potentially encroaching on its oil and gas-rich waters, Lebanon has few options for international arbitration. TRTworld Lebanon has 95.9 trillion cubic feet of gas and 865 million barrels of oil in just 45 percent of its economic waters; enough to ignite the closed Mediterranean region. To the south, its neighbour Israel claims ownership of 860km of the exclusive economic zone of Lebanon, to the north Syria is drowning in war, then there is Cyprus, which is lost ... Read More »

The nations of the Amazon want the name back

Online retail giant Amazon and the governments of eight South American countries have been given a final deadline to reach an agreement over how to use the “.amazon” web address extension after a seven-year dispute. What will happen next? Pablo Uchoa BBC It’s a name that evokes epic proportions: the world’s largest rainforest; a global tech company; and now a diplomatic saga nearing its end. This is the battle of the Amazon and it starts back in 2012. The Internet ... Read More »

The Hidden Cost of Al-Shabaab’s Campaign in North-eastern Kenya

Four years after attacking a university, Al-Shabaab has sustained its campaign, forcing many teachers, nurses and officials to flee north-eastern Kenya, one of the country’s most neglected regions. Abdullahi Abdille ICG Authorities must do more to tackle insecurity, reopen schools and counter the risk of increased militant recruitment. On 2 April 2015, four gunmen belonging to Al-Shabaab, the Somalia-based affiliate of al-Qaeda, began shooting on the campus of Garissa University College, the only major institution of higher learning in north-eastern Kenya. ... Read More »

Bring Behrouz home to Australia: he is one of us

There is a pivotal moment in Behrouz Boochani’s book, No Friend but the Mountains. In late August, 2013, a propeller-driven plane stands waiting on a strip on Christmas Island, to take asylum seekers to a faraway destination. Arnold Zable The Age Each man is escorted at two-minute intervals, 50 metres from a bus to the plane. They are held by the arms between two officers. At the base of the stairs, they are handed over to a second pair of officers, ... Read More »

A public register of child sex offenders will do more harm than good

If politicians are looking for a sure fire vote winner then anything that punishes people convicted of sex offences does the trick. Greg Barns The Canberra Times So there is likely to be little resistance to Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton’s budget announcement of $7.8 million to establish a National Public Register of Child Sex Offenders. Dutton is proposing that this register would allow all Australians to see names, aliases and photographs of sex offenders, as well as their date ... Read More »

Erdoğan’s Four Challenges

Turkey’s president suffered a frustrating setback in local government elections as democratic resilience prevailed. Marc Pierini Carnegie Europe Watch out for the impact on the economy, the rule of law, defense, and Syria. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s campaigning was vintage AKP electioneering: playing a nationalist fiddle; hiding economic realities with creative accounting and cosmetic measures; equating low interest rates (again) with low inflation; accusing foreigners of weakening the currency; threatening the opposition; continuing the crackdown on free speech and ... Read More »