Constitution Digest

News and announcements from the Comparative Constitutions Project

February 23, 2018

Turkish court sentences journalists to life in prison. Last week, a Turkish court sentenced several prominent journalists to life in prison over allegations that they supported a failed 2016 coup. The government argued that the journalists encouraged the overthrow of the constitutional order via “subliminal messages” in their TV appearances and newspaper columns; the ruling has been widely criticized by human rights organizations, press freedom advocates, and international bodies.
Maldives extends state of emergency without clear constitutional authority. On Tuesday, the Parliament of Maldives extended a state of emergency at the president’s request, despite not having sufficient quorum to do so. Under the state of emergency, the government has arrested the chief justice, another supreme court justice, and a former president.
Pakistan Supreme Court rules ex-PM Sharif cannot lead party. On Wednesday, the Supreme Court of Pakistan ruled that persons who are constitutionally ineligible to hold office may not lead political parties. The ruling prevents former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, who was removed in July over corruption allegations related to the Panama Papers, from leading the country’s ruling party.
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