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Turkey: Parliamentary Commission Approves Amendments to Constitution that Would Enhance President’s Powers

(Jan. 9, 2017) On December 30, 2016, the Commission on the Constitution in Turkey’s Grand National Assembly (GNA, the parliament) approved several draft amendments to the country’s Constitution that would, among other measures, augment the powers of the president and change the government to a presidential system from the current prime minister-led system. Of an […]

Egypt: Government Rejects Draft Law on the Impeachment of the President

(Mar. 27, 2012) On March 21, 2012, the Assistant Minister of Justice in the current cabinet rejected the draft law submitted by Members of Parliament on the impeachment of the President. The draft law would grant to the legislative branch the right to interrogate the President, remove him from office, and impose other punishments against […]

Iceland: Banking Collapse Trial of Former Prime Minister Begins

(Sept. 6, 2011) On September 5, 2011, the trial of Geir Haarde, former Prime Minister of Iceland, opened in the Landsdomur, a 15-member special court established to try criminal cases involving Cabinet ministers. Haarde faces charges of intentional or gross negligence in failing to prevent the country’s 2008 financial crisis, in which the banking system […]

Taiwan: Law on Removal of Judges Adopted, But Dinosaur Judges Might Not Become Extinct

(July 6, 2011) On June 14, 2011, Taiwan’s legislature adopted a controversial Judges Act (Fa-kuan fa) that creates a mechanism for removal from office of incompetent judges. The 103-article Act has been in the making for 23 years, but critics contend that the law is flawed and may harm judicial independence in Taiwan. (Judges Act […]

Brazil: Federal Supreme Court Decision on Clean Record Law

(Nov. 4, 2010) After five votes in favor and five votes against, the Brazilian Federal Supreme Court (STF – Supremo Tribunal Federal) decided to follow the decision issued by the Superior Electoral Tribunal (Tribunal Superior Eleitoral) and, on October 27, 2010, determined that the Clean Record Law (Lei da Ficha Limpa) is applicable to the […]

Ukraine: Simplified Impeachment Procedures

(Feb. 3, 2009) On January 15, 2009, the Ukrainian legislature, the Verkhovna Rada, adopted the Law on Special Temporary Investigative Commissions, which simplifies the procedure for the legislative body to impeach the President. Previously, the impeachment procedure could be initiated on the basis of a petition signed by three-quarters of the parliamentarians. The new Law […]