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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 […]

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 […]

Côte d’Ivoire: Former Prime Minister Sentenced to 20 Years in Prison for Corruption

(May 15, 2020) On April 28, 2020, the Tribunal Correctionnel (Criminal Trial Court) of Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire, convicted former Prime Minister Guillaume Soro in absentia of embezzlement and money laundering. The trial lasted only a few hours and was boycotted by Soro’s lawyers in protest of what they claimed were politically motivated, trumped-up charges. Soro, […]

Turkey: New Law Imposes Harsher Penalties for Violence Against Health Care Workers

(Apr. 28, 2020) On April 15, 2020, Turkey’s Parliament passed Law No. 7243 introducing harsher penalties for certain crimes committed against health care workers and their assistants. (Law No. 7243, art. 28.) Versions of the so-called “violence in health care” law had long been proposed by medical professional organizations and others in reaction to the high […]

Tunisia: Ratification of African Union Anti-corruption Convention Follows on Recent Anti-corruption Reforms

(Apr. 6, 2020) On February 10, 2020, Tunisia’s secretary of state for foreign affairs, Sabri Bash Tabaji, deposited documents of ratification of the African Union Convention on Preventing and Combating Corruption. The ratification, according to Tabaji, is an important step toward strengthening the collaboration with the African Union and African states in the fight against […]

Peru: President Enacts Decree Changing Requirements for Foreigners Convicted of Crimes to Serve Sentences Abroad

(Jan. 31, 2020) On January 23, 2020, the president of Peru, Martín Vizcarra, with the approval of the Council of Ministers, enacted Emergency Decree 018-2020 to change the prerequisites for foreigners to serve a Peruvian criminal sentence in their own country. (Decreto de Urgencia 018-2020 (DU 018-2020) que Optimiza  los Criterios y Requisitos para que […]

Lebanon: General Prosecution Issues Travel Ban After Interrogation Session with Carlos Ghosn

(Jan. 29, 2020) On January 9, 2020, the Lebanese Court of Cassation’s Office of General Prosecution issued a decision to prohibit Carlos Ghosn, the former CEO of Nissan Auto Corporation, from traveling outside the country after interrogating him regarding charges of corruption, tax evasion, and violating Lebanon’s Anti-Israel Boycott Law of 1955. Background of the […]

El Salvador: Chiefs and Members of MS-13 Gang Sentenced in Historic Trial

(Dec. 19, 2019) On December 12, 2019, an anti-mafia tribunal in El Salvador imposed sentences of up to 60 years in prison on nearly 400 chiefs and members of the MS-13 gang (Mara Salvatrucha) for their involvement in multiple crimes, including terrorism, homicide, drug trafficking, money laundering, and drug and firearms smuggling. Background of MS-13 […]

France: Council of State Rules a Law May Prohibit Something Without Providing a Criminal Sanction

(Dec. 16, 2019) The Conseil d’Etat (Council of State), France’s highest jurisdiction for matters of administrative law, ruled on October 24, 2019, that a law may prohibit a behavior without providing the particular remedy of a penal sanction. At the center of this case is a 2005 law, Loi n° 2005-158 du 23 février 2005 […]

West Bank: Palestinian Authority Announces Planned Changes to Penal Code in Response to Case of Honor Killing

(Nov. 13, 2019) The Palestinian Authority’s Ministry of Women’s Affairs has responded to a wave of public protests over an alleged honor killing case by stating it will introduce a new family protection law before the end of 2019. The new law would amend the penal code to establish a minimum age for marriage, review […]