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Brazil: Supreme Court Allows Satire of Political Candidates

(June 26, 2018) On June 21, 2018, the Brazilian Federal Supreme Court (Supremo Tribunal Federal, STF) ruled as unconstitutional provisions of the Elections Law that prevented radio and television broadcasters from running humorous programs ridiculing or lampooning candidates, political parties, and coalitions in the three months prior to an election. (Lei das Eleições, Lei No. […]

Israel: Constitutionality of Removal from Parliament for Incitement to Racism or Support for Armed Struggle Against the State

(June 7, 2018) On May 27, 2018, Israel’s Supreme Court, sitting as an extended panel of nine justices, rejected joint petitions challenging the constitutionality of amendments authorizing the Knesset (Israel’s Parliament) to remove sitting members determined to have acted “in a way constituting incitement to racism or support of an armed struggle against the State […]

Malaysia: Anti-Fake News Act Comes into Force

(Apr. 19, 2018) The Anti-Fake News Act 2018 was published in the Federal Gazette of Malaysia on April 11, 2018, coming into effect that day. (Anti-Fake News Act 2018 (Act 803), Federal Gazette website.) The Act was passed by the Malaysian Parliament on April 4 and received Royal Assent on April 9. The Act defines […]

Egypt: Two Singers Sentenced to Imprisonment

(Mar. 15, 2018) On February 27, 2018, the Egyptian court of misdemeanors sentenced two singers to imprisonment in two separate cases. In the first case, singer Sherine Abdel-Wahab was found guilty of insulting the state, which is a violation of article 80(d) of the Penal Code. (Brian Rohan, Egypt Courts Punish Singers for ‘Insults’ and […]

China: Rules Regulating Microblogs Issued

(Feb. 23, 2018) On February 2, 2018, the Cyberspace Administration of China (CAC) released the Provisions on Administration of Microblog Information Services (the Provisions), which will take effect on March 20, 2018. The Provisions were formulated with the goal of promoting the healthy and orderly development of microblog information services, protecting the lawful rights and […]

Israel: Supreme Court Holds Threat of Suicide Not a Criminal Offense

(Feb. 15, 2018) On January 17, 2018, Israel’s Supreme Court unanimously overturned the conviction of an appellant who had threatened to take her own life and been charged with committing a criminal threat under § 192 of the Penal Law, 5737-1977. The Court opinion was issued by Justice Dafna Barak-Erez, with Justices Uzi Vogelman and […]

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 […]