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South Korea: Amended Law Criminalizes Sending Leaflets to North Korea by Balloon

(Jan. 19, 2021) On December 14, 2020, the South Korean National Assembly passed a bill to amend the Development of Inter-Korean Relations Act (Act No. 7763, Dec. 29, 2005). The amendment, Act No. 17763, was published in Gwanbo (official gazette) on December 29, 2020. The amendment added a provision that prohibits acts that violate an […]

Finland: Supreme Court Orders Dissolution of Neo-Nazi Association that Violates Human Rights

(Oct. 16, 2020) On September 22, 2020, the Finnish Supreme Court ordered the dissolution of Nordiska Motståndsrörelsen (NMR) (Nordic Resistance Movement), an unregistered neo-Nazi association. The Supreme Court found that the association is unlawful because its activities and stated objectives violate law and good practice. It also found that the association’s activities are not protected […]

Germany: Bremen Prohibits Flying or Using German Imperial War Flags

(Oct. 13, 2020) On September 14, 2020, Minister of the Interior Ulrich Mäurer of the city-state of Bremen, Germany issued a decree banning the public flying or use of the German imperial war flag. Flying such a flag on private property where it is clearly intended to be and is visible to everyone is also […]

Israel: Supreme Court Holds City Rabbis Do Not Enjoy Unlimited Freedom of Speech

(Oct. 12, 2020) On September 21, 2020, Israel’s Supreme Court, sitting as a High Court of Justice, unanimously ordered the minister of justice and the attorney general (AG) to file a disciplinary action against the rabbi of the city of Safed for a series of offensive statements attributed to him. The statements involved disparaging comments […]

Israel: Temporary Restriction on the Right to Protest during Coronavirus Lockdown Adopted

(Oct. 9, 2020) On September 30, 2020, the Knesset (Israel’s parliament) plenum, by a vote of 46-38, passed legislation authorizing the government to declare, during a national lockdown, a “special state of emergency due to the coronavirus” and impose travel restrictions and other restrictions on the movement of persons as well as on public gatherings. […]

Uzbekistan: Codes Amended to Increase Criminal and Administrative Responsibility amid Coronavirus Pandemic

(Sept. 17, 2020) On March 26, 2020, the president of the Republic of Uzbekistan, Shavkat Mirziyoyev, signed a law amending the country’s criminal code, criminal procedure code, and code of administrative responsibility. The law entered into force upon publication. (Law No. 3RU-613 of the Republic of Uzbekistan on Amendments and Additions to the Criminal and […]

Israel: Supreme Court Rejects Petition to Relocate or Further Limit Protests Held near Prime Minister’s Official Residence

(Aug. 27, 2020) On August 19, 2020, Israel’s Supreme Court, sitting as a High Court of Justice, rejected a petition filed by 60 Jerusalem residents to relocate or place limitations on protests taking place near the official residence of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Jerusalem. Protests against the prime minister, who has been indicted on […]

Germany: Desecration of EU Symbols Criminalized

(July 6, 2020) On June 24, 2020, an amendment to the German Criminal Code entered into force that makes the desecration of European Union (EU) flags and the EU hymn a crime punishable by imprisonment for up to three years or a fine. In particular, it criminalizes desecrating the EU flag or hymn publicly, in […]