Constitution Digest

News and announcements from the Comparative Constitutions Project

November 12, 2015

Benin president will not seek reelection in 2016. On an official visit to Paris, Benin President Thomas Boni Yayi announced that he will not seek a third term in office out of "respect" for his country's constitution. Bon Yayi's decision directly contrasts the movement to extend presidential term limits in other African nations, including Burundi, Congo, and Rwanda, where heads of state have sought to amend or replace their countries' constitutions to allow them to run for additional terms.
Catalonian secession battle intensifies. On Monday, Catalonia's regional parliament approved a plan for formal secession from Spain, in spite of orders from the Constitutional Court to suspend the process. Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy denounced the move as "a blatant disregard for the state's institutions," and vowed to use all necessary legal and political means to halt secessionist efforts.
Russian proposal calls for new Syrian constitution. In a document circulated ahead of the upcoming Vienna talks on the Syrian conflict, Russia calls for a new Syrian constitution within 18 months, to be followed by a presidential election. The proposals have drawn criticism from officials involved in the talks for failing to address the status of Bashar al-Assad, the current president of Syria, and have been called "premature" by Syria's official newspaper.
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