Constitution Digest

News and announcements from the Comparative Constitutions Project

September 29, 2017

Kurds vote for independence from Iraq, face reprisal. On Monday, Iraqi Kurds voted by an overwhelming 92% to declare independence from Iraq. The Iraqi government, which strongly opposes Kurdish independence and denounced the vote as unconstitutional, retaliated by shutting down all international flights in and out of Kurdish territory.
Polish president introduces judicial reform bill. On Monday, Polish President Andrzej Duda proposed judicial reform legislation that would give the Supreme Court the power to punish judges and would mandate retirement for Supreme Court judges at the age of 65, which some see as a roundabout way to replace much of the court in the coming months. The European Union has called for a legal commission to analyze the legislation.
Brazilian Supreme Court rules religion can be taught in public schools. On Wednesday, the Supreme Court of Brazil held that public schools may offer voluntary faith-based classes. Brazil’s constitution mandates religious freedom but allows for optional religious education in public schools; the government has previously straddled these provisions by allowing only “non-confessional” instruction wherein teachers were not permitted to promote particular faiths.
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