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Vanuatu: Fourteen Politicians Sentenced to Prison for Corruption

(Oct. 26, 2015) On October 22, 2015, the Vanuatu Supreme Court sentenced 14 sitting members of parliament (MPs), including the Speaker of Parliament and the Deputy Prime Minister, to terms of imprisonment after their conviction on bribery and corruption charges.  (Vanuatu Court Sentences MPs, Including Former PMs Carasses and Vohor, to Jail for Corruption, ABC […]

New Zealand: Ocean Sanctuary Announced

(Sept. 30, 2015) On September 28, 2015, at the United Nations General Assembly in New York, New Zealand Prime Minister John Key announced that a new, fully-protected ocean sanctuary in the Kermadec region will be established by legislation to be enacted next year. The sanctuary will cover about 620,000 square kilometers (about 385,250 square miles) […]

New Zealand: New Rules on Drones Come into Effect

(July 31, 2015) On August 1, 2015, new and amended Civil Aviation Rules on unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) and remotely piloted aircraft systems (RPAS) came into effect in New Zealand. The rules, which were developed by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) under the Civil Aviation Act 1990, were approved by the Associate Minister of Transport […]

Australia: National Library to Implement Digital Legal Deposit from January 2016

(July 13, 2015) As a result of changes to the legal deposit provisions in the Copyright Act 1968 (Cth) made by the Civil Law and Justice Legislation Amendment Bill 2014 (Cth), the National Library of Australia will have the power to collect and preserve Australian works published in electronic format, beginning January 1, 2016. (Clarissa […]

New Zealand: Legislation Aimed at Preventing and Punishing Cyberbullying Passed

(July 6, 2015) On June 30, 2015, the New Zealand Parliament passed the Harmful Digital Communications Bill. (Harmful Digital Communications Bill Passes, PARLIAMENT TODAY (June 30, 2015); Harmful Digital Communications Bill, New Zealand Parliament website (last visited July 6, 2015).) The legislation, which was originally introduced in November 2013, will establish complaint mechanisms for victims […]

Indonesia: Court Rejects Two Challenges to Marriage Act

(June 25, 2015) On June 18, 2015, the Indonesian Constitutional Court (Mahkamah Konstitusi) released its decisions on two petitions for judicial review of Law No. 1 of 1974 on Marriage (Marriage Law). (Undang-undang Nomor 1 Tahun 1974 Tentang Perkawinan, Ministry of Religious Affairs website,(in Indonesian); Law of the Republic of Indonesia Number 1 of the […]

Australia: Law Allowing Blocking of Copyright-Infringing Websites Passed

(June 23, 2015) On June 22, 2015, the Australian Senate passed a bill that will allow copyright holders to request that overseas websites be blocked in Australia on the grounds that those websites have the “primary purpose” of facilitating copyright infringement. The Copyright Amendment (Online Infringement) Bill 2015 had previously been passed by the House […]

New Zealand: Animal Welfare Legislation Recognizes Animals as Sentient, Bans Cosmetic Testing

(May 19, 2015) On May 5, 2015, the New Zealand Parliament unanimously passed the Animal Welfare Amendment Act (No. 2) 2015, which includes an amendment to the long title of the principal legislation, the Animal Welfare Act 1999, in order to specifically recognize animals as sentient. (Animal Welfare Amendment Act (No 2) 2015, s 4, […]

Fiji: Parliament Approves Ratification of Convention Against Torture

(Mar. 19, 2015) On March 16, 2015, the Fijian Parliament voted unanimously to support the ratification of the United Nations Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (UNCAT). (Nasik Swami, Yes to UNCAT, FIJI TIMES (Mar. 17, 2015).) The Parliament voted on a government motion following a debate on a […]