ANKARA – Turkey’s parliament passed a law on Saturday on changing the structure of bar associations, a move that lawyers argue will further undermine judicial independence in a country where they say the judiciary is already in disarray. Thousands of lawyers have protested in Istanbul, Ankara and other cities against the plan, saying it aims to silence some of the few institutions still speaking out against the government’s record on rule of law and human…"Turkish parliament passes disputed bar associations law"
– U.S. President Donald Trump said on Friday he will sign an executive order on immigration in the next few weeks with a road to citizenship for migrants who are in the United States illegally but arrived in the country as children. In an interview with Spanish-language TV network Telemundo, Trump said one aspect of the measure will be Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), the program under which such migrants have been allowed to…"Trump says he will sign immigration order with road to citizenship for ‘Dreamers’"
ATHENS – Greece condemned a decision by Turkey on Friday to convert Istanbul’s Hagia Sophia museum into a mosque, saying it would have repercussions not only on relations between the two countries, but on Turkey’s ties with the European Union. Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan said on Friday that the first prayers would be held in Hagia Sophia on July 24, after declaring the ancient monument was once again a mosque following a court ruling revoking…"Greece condemns Turkey’s decision to convert Hagia Sophia into mosque"
HOUSTON – A U.S. Supreme Court decision recognizing about half of Oklahoma as Native American reservation land has implications for oil and gas development in the state, raising complex regulatory and tax questions that could take years to settle, according to Oklahoma attorneys. The court on Thursday overturned an Oklahoma tribe member’s rape conviction because the location where the crime was committed should have been considered reservation land and therefore outside the reach of state…"Supreme Court ruling on Oklahoma tribal land raises questions for oil industry"
– Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan declared Istanbul’s Hagia Sophia open to Muslim worship on Friday after a court ruled that the building’s conversion to a museum by modern Turkey’s founding statesman was illegal. Below are some reactions to the court’s ruling and Erdogan’s announcement. RUSSIAN ORTHODOX CHURCH “It is a real shame that the concerns of the Russian Orthodox Church and other Orthodox churches were not heard. This decision, alas, is not aimed at reconciling…"Reaction to Turkish ruling and Erdogan statement on Hagia Sophia"
MOSCOW – A Russian LGBT activist said she was fined 75,000 roubles ($1,000) on Friday on charges of spreading “gay propaganda” among minors by publishing drawings of same-sex couples with children online. Yulia Tsvetkova and her lawyer said she was prosecuted over a series of colourful pictures, some showing two men or two women, holding babies or standing with young children, sometimes surrounded by rainbow-coloured love hearts. The court in the eastern city of Komsomolsk-on-Amur…"Russian LGBT activist fined for ‘gay propaganda’ family drawings"
WASHINGTON – At least six police unions qualified for a combined total of $2 million to $4.4 million in emergency U.S. government loans intended to help small businesses stay afloat during the coronavirus lockdown, according to data released Monday by the U.S. Small Business Administration. The unions represent about 110,000 law enforcement officers in Philadelphia, Houston, New York state, Michigan and 11 Southern states. All told, the six approved loans make up a small fraction…"U.S. police unions approved for millions in pandemic aid"
ISTANBUL – President Tayyip Erdogan declared Istanbul’s Hagia Sophia open to Muslim worship on Friday after a top court ruled that the building’s conversion to a museum by modern Turkey’s founding statesman was illegal. Erdogan made his announcement, just an hour after the court ruling was revealed, despite international warnings not to change the status of the nearly 1,500-year-old monument, revered by Christians and Muslims alike. “The decision was taken to hand over the management…"Turkey’s Erdogan says Hagia Sophia becomes mosque after court ruling"
MANILA – Philippine lawmakers rejected the renewal of a 25-year license for country’s top broadcaster on Friday, outraging activists who saw the move to keep ABS-CBN Corp off the air as part of a political vendetta on behalf of President Rodrigo Duterte. A legislative committee overwhelmingly agreed with a working group’s assessment that ABS-CBN, which employs 11,000 people and has an audience of tens of millions of Filipinos, was “undeserving of the grant of legislative…"Philippine lawmakers block license bid for broadcaster that angered Duterte"
WASHINGTON – Faced with sliding poll numbers and multiple national crises, President Donald Trump is set to hold his latest rally on Saturday in New Hampshire, a state he narrowly lost to Democrat Hillary Clinton in 2016 and hopes to flip this year. The rally will take place at an airport hangar in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, as coronavirus cases surge across the country and public health and state officials advise against large gatherings. A rally…"Facing crises and falling polls, Trump to hold rally in battleground New Hampshire"