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Iceland/European Court of Human Rights: Dismissal of Defamation Claim Violated Right to Respect for Private Life

(Nov. 20, 2017) On November 7, 2017, the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) found that the Icelandic Supreme Court had erred in ruling against a claim of defamation, and “had not struck a fair balance between the applicant’s right to respect for his private life under Article 8 of the Convention [for the Protection of Human […]

Singapore: Bans on Two Clerics and Certain Books

(Nov. 9, 2017) It was reported on October 30, 2017, that Singapore has banned two foreign Islamic religious leaders from preaching during cruises and has prohibited the circulation of four foreign books in the country. The Islamic clerics have been denied permission to enter Singapore for the purpose of joining religiously themed sea cruises scheduled […]

Russia: New Legislation Restricts Anonymity of Internet Users

(Sept. 5, 2017) On July 29, 2017, the President of the Russian Federation signed two recently adopted federal laws that prohibit the anonymous use of online messenger applications and detail the procedure for blocking access to websites recognized by the Russian authorities as prohibited. (Law on Information and Information Technologies Has Been Amended, KREMLIN.RU (official […]

Germany: Law on Insulting Foreign Leaders Abolished

(July 26, 2017) On July 17, 2017, an act that abolishes the criminal law provision that made it a crime to insult a foreign head of state, a member of a foreign government who is in Germany in his official capacity, or a head of a foreign diplomatic mission who is accredited in Germany was […]

Israel: Court Decision Protects Political Advertising

(July 19, 2017) On June 26, 2017, Israel’s Supreme Court unanimously rejected an appeal against a decision by the Court for Administrative Matters (CAM) to void a decision by the Givat Shmuel Municipality to remove politically oriented outdoor billboard advertisements in areas designated by the municipality for commercial advertising. The paid advertisements were intended “to […]

Bahrain: Two-Year Imprisonment for Publishing Rumors and False News

(July 19, 2017) On July 10, 2017, the High Criminal Court in Manama, Bahrain, convicted Nabeel Rajab, a human rights activist, of “publishing and disseminating rumours and false news” and sentenced him to two years of imprisonment. (Bahrain: Jail Term for Human Rights Defender Nabeel Rajab Exposes Authorities’ Relentless Campaign to Wipe out Dissent, Amnesty […]

Denmark: Blasphemy Law Repealed

(July 6, 2017) On June 8, 2017, the Danish Parliament repealed the blasphemy provision in the Danish Penal Code. The repeal took effect on the day after publication in the Lovtidende (Danish official gazette), i.e., on June 10, 2017.  (Lov om ændring af straffeloven, LOV nr 675 af 08/06/2017 [Law on Amending the Penal Code, […]