Library of Congress

Law Library of Congress

The Library of Congress > Law Library > News & Events > Global Legal Monitor

Malaysia: Proposal to Reform Laws on Sexual Offenses

(June 16, 2016) Malaysia’s Home Ministry is contemplating revising the country’s laws applicable to sex offenders. Both reform of existing legislation and the adoption of a new statute are being considered. While under current law survivors of sexual attacks must be present in court to face the accused perpetrators, the Deputy Home Minister, Nur Jazlan […]

Israel: Penalty for Priests Who Commit Sex Offenses Against Persons Being Counseled

(June 14, 2016) On March 30, 2016, the Knesset (Israel’s parliament) passed an amendment to the Penal Law, 5737-1977, to penalize religious priests who commit sexual offenses against vulnerable persons. (Penal Law (Amendment No. 122) 5776-2016 (Amendment Law), §§ 1 & 2, SEFER HAHUKIM [BOOK OF LAWS, the official gazette, SH] 5776 No. 2546, p. […]

Jordan: Ministerial Committee Decides to Repeal Controversial Rape Provision

(May 6, 2016) On April 17, 2016, a Ministerial Committee established by the Jordanian Cabinet issued a decision to repeal article 308 of the Penal Code. Article 308 had provided for the pardoning of an individual convicted of the felony of rape if the perpetrator married the victim.  (The Abolishment of Article 308 of the […]

Germany: Overhaul of Criminal Law Relating to Sexual Offenses

(Apr. 11, 2016) On March 16, 2016, the German government agreed on a draft act to close gaps in the current criminal law relating to sexual offenses. (Gesetzentwurf der Bundesregierung, Entwurf eines Gesetzes zur Änderung des Strafgesetzbuches – Verbesserung des Schutzes der sexuellen Selbstbestimmung [Draft Act of the Federal Government, Draft Act to Amend the Criminal […]

France: New Legal Protections for Children

(Apr. 1, 2016) On March 14, 2016, the French government promulgated a new law on child protection. (Loi no. 2016-297 du 14 mars 2016 relative a la protection de l’enfant (1) [Law No. 2016-297 of March 14, 2016, Regarding the Protection of the Child], LEGIFRANCE.) It amends existing French legislation with the overall goal of increasing protection for children, especially […]

China: Extremism in Recent Legislation

(Jan. 12, 2016) “Extremism” used to be more a politicized notion appearing in government instruments than a precisely defined legal term under the laws of the People’s Republic of China (PRC). Recently, however, the term has been addressed in a series of laws: first, the new National Security Law contains an article with the general declaration that the state […]

Turkey: Constitutional Court Rulings on “Reasonable Suspicion” in Criminal Procedure Code and on 2014 Changes to Internet Law

(Dec. 30, 2015) The Constitutional Court of Turkey issued two key decisions in December 2015, on amending provisions of a “package” law adopted in December 2014 and on amendments to Turkey’s Internet Law that had been introduced in February 2014.  (Top Court Rejects Appeal Against ‘Reasonable Suspicion’ Clause in Security Law, TODAY’S ZAMAN (Dec. 23, […]

Pakistan: Federal Government Plans to Introduce Legislation Prohibiting Apostasy Pronouncements

(Sept. 21, 2015)  According to a September 10, 2015, news report, the Federal Government of Pakistan is considering legislation to prohibit takfir, a religious pronouncement or clerical ruling that declares one Muslim or group of Muslims to be non-believers or apostates.  A government official was reported to have stated, “[u]nder new laws, no one will […]

Burma: Draft Legislation on Revision of Penal Code

(Sept. 15, 2015) It was reported on June 22, 2015, that Burma’s Union Supreme Court had submitted the Penal Code Amendment Bill to the Union Parliament. The draft law seeks to update Burma’s antiquated Penal Code of 1860, last amended in 1974, but only by making “fine adjustments and a handful of other minor changes […]

Germany: Allowing Juvenile to Stop Medical Treatment for Cystic Fibrosis Constitutes Torture

(Sept. 11, 2015) On August 4, 2015, the German Federal Court of Justice (Bundesgerichtshof, BGH) held that letting a 12-year-old boy decide if he wants to continue treatment for the genetic disease cystic fibrosis, from which he had suffered since early childhood and for which he needed constant medical treatment, constitutes neglect of the custodian’s […]