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England: Government Introduces Law to Allow More Flexible Proxy Voting in Local Elections Due to COVID-19

(Mar. 18, 2021) In England on February 23, 2021, the Representation of the People (Proxy Vote Applications) (Coronavirus) Regulations 2021 were laid before Parliament. If enacted, the regulations will enable individuals who are self-quarantining or “shielding” due to COVID-19 to vote in local elections, scheduled for May 6, 2021, via a last minute proxy vote […]

Switzerland: Popular Initiative to Hold Businesses Accountable for Human Rights Abuses or Environmental Harm Abroad Fails

(Feb. 10, 2021) On November 29, 2020, the popular initiative “For Responsible Businesses – Protecting Human Rights and the Environment” (Responsible Business Initiative) failed to reach the necessary majority for approval in Switzerland. The initiative aimed to introduce stricter statutory requirements for Swiss businesses abroad to comply with human rights obligations and environmental standards. It […]

Jamaica: House of Representatives Passes Bills Easing Admission of Drug Crime Evidence

(Jan. 15, 2021) On December 8, 2020, Jamaica’s House of Representatives passed amendments to the Dangerous Drugs Act, 1948, and the Evidence Act, 1843. If enacted, the amendments would introduce new procedures for securing and disposing of drugs seized in connection with drug crimes and enable the admission of drug samples and recorded images as […]

Azerbaijan: Draft Laws on Use of Videoconferencing Systems in Parliamentary Procedure Adopted

(Apr. 14, 2020) On April 9, 2020, the Parliament of Azerbaijan adopted in the second reading a draft law that, should it ultimately be enacted, would amend the Internal Regulations of the Parliament. The draft law would authorize the speaker of the Parliament to order the holding of parliamentary (plenary) meetings and the meetings of […]

Japan: Basic Act on Countermeasures Against Gambling Addiction Enacted

(Sept. 13, 2018) The Basic Act on Countermeasures Against Gambling Addiction was enacted in Japan in July 2018. (Basic Act, Act No. 74 of 2018, KANPOU [OFFICIAL GAZETTE] Extra ed. No. 154 (July 13, 2018), National Printing Bureau website (in Japanese).) The Basic Act will become effective by mid-October 2018. (Id. Supp. Provisions art. 1.) […]