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Egypt: Parliament Approves Draft Law Concealing the Identity of Victims of Sexual Violence Crimes during the Pretrial Investigative Stage

(Sept. 8, 2020) On August 16, 2020, the Egyptian Council of Representatives (Egypt’s parliament) in a general session approved a draft law aimed at protecting the reputations of victims of sexual violence and encouraging the reporting of sexual crimes. Two-thirds of the members of parliament voted in a favor of passing the draft law. The […]

Israel: Knesset Passes Law Authorizing Virtual Hearings with Participation of Prisoners and Detainees

(Aug. 25, 2020) On August 10, 2020, the Knesset (Israel’s parliament) passed the Law on Holding Virtual Hearings with the Participation of Prisoners and Detainees during the Period of the Spread of the Novel Coronavirus (Temporary Provision) 5780-2020 (Virtual Hearings Law). The Virtual Hearings Law regulates the operation of virtual court hearings in Israeli civilian courts […]

Italy: New Omnibus Law Provides for Improved Digital Network Systems, Anti-Mafia Measures, Aid to Airlines, and Other Administrative Regulations

(Aug. 13, 2020) On July 17, 2020, Decree Law No. 76 of July 16, 2020 entered into force in Italy, providing for improved digital network systems, anti-Mafia measures, aid to airlines, and administrative regulations aimed at eliminating and simplifying requirements for economic activities. Improvement of Digital Network Systems and User Access The new law provides […]

Denmark: Appeals Court Rules Coughing on and Screaming “Corona” at Police Officer Constitutes Threat of Violence

(Aug. 13, 2020) On June 2, 2020, a Danish appeals court, the Western High Court (Vestre Landsret), convicted a man for coughing on and screaming “corona” at a police officer, ruling that these actions when done together constituted a threat of violence under the Danish Criminal Code. (Vestre Landsret, Case No. V.L. S-0831-20, U.2020.2985-2899, June […]

China: Man Executed for Killing Government Officials Performing Epidemic Control Duties

(Aug. 12, 2020) On July 9, 2020, the Supreme People’s Court (SPC), China’s highest court, published a press release announcing that the intermediate court of Honghe Prefecture of Yunnan Province had executed a 24-year-old man that day in accordance with an SPC order. The man, named Ma Jianguo, had been sentenced to death by the […]

France: Parliament Adopts Law against Domestic Violence

(Aug. 7, 2020) On July 21, 2020, the French Senate adopted a bill that aims to better protect victims of domestic violence. The National Assembly had adopted the same text on July 16, 2020. The bill was signed into law on July 30, 2020. This new law contains several measures aimed at detecting and fighting […]

Saudi Arabia: Flogging and Death Abolished as Ta‘zeer Penalties

(Aug. 3, 2020) On July 15, 2020, the director of the Human Rights Commission of Saudi Arabia, Awwad bin Saleh, announced that the commission is planning to launch a number of initiatives to highlight the kingdom’s reforms in the field of human rights. Those reforms include abolishing flogging and capital punishment for minors as ta‘zeer […]

Italy: New Law Including Measures on Home Detention or Postponement of Penalties due to COVID-19 Enters into Force

(July 27, 2020) On June 30, 2020, a new law containing a provision on the adjustment of penal sentences because of the COVID-19 pandemic and other miscellaneous provisions entered into force in Italy. (Law No. 70 of June 25, 2020, amending Decree Law No. 28 of April 30, 2020 (D.L. No. 28).) Measures on Home […]

Sudan: New Law Amending Penal Code Takes Effect

(July 23, 2020) On July 13, 2020, the Sudanese Official Gazette published Law No. 12 of 2020, which amends 15 provisions of the Penal Code of 1991. According to Justice Minister Nasredeen Abdulbari, the new provisions are part of Sudan’s efforts to eliminate all laws that violate human rights and “demolish any kind of discrimination […]