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Turkey: Controversial Criminal Code Provision Amended

(May 2, 2008) On April 30, 2008, Turkey's Grand National Parliament passed an amendment to a controversial provision of the Criminal Code. The Turkish legislature had adopted a new Criminal Code on September 26, 2004, that became effective on June 1, 2005. (Law No. 5237, Sept. 26, 2004, T.C. RESMI GAZETE [Official Gazette of the […]

Belgium: Compensation of Holocaust Survivors

(Apr. 2, 2008) The Commission on Restitution for Holocaust Victims (Commission pour le dédommagement des membres de la Communauté juive de Belgique) issued its final report on February 4, 2008. The Commission reviewed 5,620 claims and awarded compensation in 5,210 cases, for a total amount of €35.2 million (about US$55.4 million). One hundred sixty-two awards […]

Israel: Special Subsidies for Needy Elderly and Holocaust Survivors

(Apr. 2, 2008) On March 31, 2008, the Knesset (Parliament) passed the Program for Increase of Income Protection Benefits for Needy Elderly and Holocaust Survivors (Amendments) 5768-2008. The law is designed to improve the economic status of elderly persons and set arrangements for assistance to holocaust survivors. The law provides for monthly pensions to be […]

Liberia: UN Urges Human Rights Improvement

(Apr. 2, 2008) A new United Nations report, prepared by the U.N. mission in Liberia, discusses human rights conditions in the country and makes 12 major recommendations to improve the situation in the country. Covering the May to October 2007 period, the 24-page report concerns violations of economic, social, civil, and political rights, as well […]

Moldova: New Law on Freedom of Assembly

(Apr. 2, 2008) On February 29, 2008, the Parliament of Moldova adopted a new Law on Assembly, drafted in accordance with the Moldova–European Union Action Plan adopted by the European Union and aimed at developing democratic values in Moldova. The Law establishes that mass gatherings and assemblies in public places do not need to be […]

Rwanda: Genocide Revisionism Law

(Apr. 2, 2008) On February 8, 2008, members of the Chamber of Deputies (Lower House) of the Rwandan Parliament voted in favor of a controversial new law aimed at stopping "genocide ideology," a term for the outlook that perpetrators of genocide foster to fan divisive hate campaigns between different groups of Rwandans. The law comes […]

Chad: UN Agency Concerned About Abductions

(Mar. 2, 2008) Rupert Colville, a spokesperson for the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, has expressed concern about the human rights situation in Chad. Opposition leaders and members of civil society organizations have been reported abducted and detained in the period since the uprising in the N'Djamena, Chad's capital city. […]

Cuba: Cuba Signs International Human Rights Agreements with the United Nations

(Mar. 2, 2008) New York, U.N. Headquarters–Cuba signed the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. The covenants were signed on 28 February 2008, where Cuban Foreign Minister Felipe Pérez Roque met with the UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and the Coordination Bureau of the […]

International Criminal Court; Kenya: Opposition Files Case Against Government

(Mar. 2, 2008) The Orange Democratic Movement (ODM), the Kenyan opposition party, filed a case against the Kenyan government before the International Criminal Court (ICC) for crimes against humanity, over the government's "mishandling of the protests" following the December 2007 election results. The ODM accuses the Kenyan police of adopting a "shoot to kill policy" […]

Nigeria: Cross-Dressers Face Charges

(Mar. 2, 2008) Eighteen cross-dressers face criminal charges before a Sharia court one year after their arrest in Bauchi, a city in northern Nigeria. Although the men were at first charged with sodomy, a crime punishable by death under Sharia law, the charge has now been reduced to indecent dressing and vagrancy. Yusuf Adamu, the […]