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Australia: Amendments to War Crimes Provisions Relate to Fight Against Islamic State

(Oct. 17, 2016) On October 12, 2016, the Australian government introduced a bill into the Parliament to amend provisions related to war crimes contained in the Criminal Code Act 1995 (Cth).  (Criminal Code Amendment (War Crimes) Bill 2016, PARLIAMENT OF AUSTRALIA (last visited Oct. 13, 2016).) The proposed changes were first announced by the Prime […]

Australia: Bill to Establish State Relationship Register for Same-Sex Couples Introduced

(Oct. 7, 2016) On September 22, 2016, the South Australian government introduced into the State Parliament a bill that will enable unmarried couples, both same-sex and heterosexual, to register their relationships with the government.  The Relationships Register Bill 2016 (SA) provides for such couples to receive a certificate of registration and have their relationships legally […]

Malaysia: Steps Taken Towards Ratification of Trans-Pacific Partnership

(Sept. 29, 2016) On September 24, 2016, it was reported that the Malaysian Secretary-General for International Trade and Industry, Datuk J. Jayasuri, had stated that the country is on track to ratify the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) by early 2018.  (Amir Hisyam Rasid, (Update) Malaysia Amending 18 Laws in Preparation for TPP Ratification, NEW STRAITS TIMES […]

New Zealand: Bill Requiring Standardized Packaging of Tobacco Products Passed

(Sept. 20, 2016) On September 8, 2016, the New Zealand Parliament enacted the Smoke-Free Environments (Tobacco Standardised Packaging) Amendment Act 2016 with a vote of 108 in favor and 13 against.  (Press Release, Peseta Sam Lotu-liga, Standardised Packaging Bill Passed (Sept. 8, 2016); Smoke-Free Environments (Tobacco Standardised Packaging) Amendment Act 2016 (Amendment Act), New Zealand […]

Samoa: Citizenship Act Amended to Allow Second Generation Samoans Overseas to Claim Citizenship

(Aug. 24, 2016) On August 23, 2016, the Samoan Legislative Assembly (the unicameral Parliament of Samoa) passed a bill that enables people born outside the country who have at least one grandparent who is or was a Samoan citizen to be granted citizenship.  (Citizenship Amendment Bill 2016 & Citizenship Amendment Bill 2016: Explanatory Memorandum, Parliament […]

Papua New Guinea: Changes to Marriage Laws to be Introduced

(Aug. 23, 2016) On August 22, 2016, it was reported that the Papua New Guinea government will soon introduce legislation to amend the country’s marriage and divorce laws.  (Nellie Setepano, PNG Marriage Laws to Be Amended as Part of Reform Bundle to Legally Recognize Traditional Marriage and Protect Minors, PNG POST-COURIER (Aug. 22, 2016).)  Two […]

Australia: State Legislation to Remove Barriers to Changing Sex on Birth Certificate

(Aug. 22, 2016) On August 18, 2016, the Attorney-General of the Australian State of Victoria introduced the Births, Deaths and Marriages Registration Amendment Bill 2016 in the state parliament.  The bill “removes the need for applicants to have undergone sex affirmation surgery before being able to apply for a new birth certificate.”  (Press Release, Martin […]

New Zealand: Security and Intelligence Bill Introduced

(Aug. 16, 2016) On August 15, 2016, the Prime Minister of New Zealand, John Key, introduced the New Zealand Intelligence and Security Bill 2016 in the Parliament.  (New Zealand Intelligence and Security Bill, NEW ZEALAND PARLIAMENT; New Zealand Intelligence and Security Bill, New Zealand Legislation website (both last visited Aug. 15, 2016).)  The Bill implements […]

Malaysia: National Security Council Act Comes into Force

(Aug. 4, 2016) On August 1, 2016, the National Security Council Act 2016 came into force in Malaysia.  (National Security Council Act 2016 (Act 776) (NSC Act), e-Federal Gazette website (official portal); National Security Act 2016 Appointment of Date of Coming into Operation, P.U. (B) 310, FEDERAL GOVERNMENT GAZETTE (July 14, 2016), e-Federal Gazette website.)  The Act, […]