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Iran: Charter on Citizens’ Rights Signed

(Feb. 28, 2017) With the aim of “recovering and promoting citizens’ rights,” Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, under his constitutional authority to “determine the program and policies of the government,” signed the Charter on Citizens’ Rights in a ceremony on December 19, 2016.  (Rouhani Unveils Charter on Civil Rights; Vagueness Regarding “Enforcement Guarantee,” VOA (Dec. 19, […]

Turkey: Parliamentary Commission Approves Amendments to Constitution that Would Enhance President’s Powers

(Jan. 9, 2017) On December 30, 2016, the Commission on the Constitution in Turkey’s Grand National Assembly (GNA, the parliament) approved several draft amendments to the country’s Constitution that would, among other measures, augment the powers of the president and change the government to a presidential system from the current prime minister-led system. Of an […]

South Korea: President May Be Impeached

(Dec. 2, 2016) An impeachment motion against South Korean President Park Geun-hye has now been delayed and it is not certain whether it will be brought against her in, and passed by, the National Assembly. (Yoon-seung Kang, Impeachment Motion Delayed as Oppositions Fail to Narrow Gap, YONHAP NEWS (Dec. 1, 2016); for background on the […]

South Korea: Scandal Raises Questions About the Future of the President

(Nov. 23, 2016) On November 20, 2016, South Korean prosecutors indicted Choi Soon-sil, a close friend of President Park Geun-hye, on charges of abuse of power, coercion, attempted coercion, and attempted fraud. The prosecutors also announced that Park is subject to investigation in the case as a co-conspirator. (Myo-ja Ser, Prosecutors Announce President Park Is […]

United Kingdom: Brexit – High Court Rules Parliamentary Consent Required

(Nov. 16, 2016) In the latest development in the United Kingdom’s path of withdrawal from membership from the European Union, the High Court of England and Wales issued a ruling on November 3, 2016, on whether the Government of the UK can invoke, without parliamentary consent, the article of the EU treaty that launches the […]

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 […]

Burkina Faso: Arrest Warrant Issued for Former President

(Jan. 6, 2016) On December 21, 2015, Burkina Faso’s military court issued an international arrest warrant for the country’s former President, Blaise Compaoré. An international warrant was necessary because Compaoré has been living in the Cote d’Ivoire, a country on the southwestern border of Burkina Faso. He is charged with having a role in the […]

Rwanda: Referendum Approves Extended Presidential Terms

(Dec. 30, 2015) On December 19, 2015, Rwandan citizens approved a referendum to amend the country’s Constitution. Reportedly, 98% of the voters agreed to the revision of article 101. The change will permit the current president, Paul Kagame, to remain in office for a third seven-year term beginning in 2017, to be followed by two […]

Republic of the Congo: President Announces Referendum on New Constitution

(Oct. 1, 2015) On September 22, 2015, Denis Sassou Nguesso, the President of the Republic of the Congo, announced that a referendum would be held on the adoption of a new Constitution. (Congo: Denis Sassou Nguesso annonce un référendum sur un projet de nouvelle Constitution [Congo: Denis Sassou Nguesso Announces Referendum on a Project for […]