Mon, Dec 01, 2014 - Page 7 News List

World News Quick Take

Agencies

DOMINICAN REPUBLIC

Medina eyes abortion law

President Danilo Medina is urging legislators to decriminalize abortions if a woman’s life is at risk or in cases of rape, incest or fetus malformation. Medina expressed his opinions in a letter sent late on Friday to the leader of the legislative Chamber of Deputies as he explained his reasons for vetoing a measure that would double prison sentences in abortion cases. He did not oppose the stiffer penalties, but said the measure should spell out conditions when abortions can be allowed. The bill would have allowed them in what it called only a “state of necessity.” Abortion is illegal in all cases under the current law. A constitutional amendment in 2009 strengthened the ban by declaring that life begins at conception.

UNITED STATES

NY subway nuptials held

A young couple in New York City decided they spent so much time on the subway that they might as well get married there. So Hector Irakliotis and Tatyana Sandler exchanged vows on Friday on the “N” train as it crossed from Brooklyn into Manhattan. The Daily News reports that the 26-year-old groom boarded first with his groomsmen, who set about decorating the poles and seats with white ribbons. The 25-year-old bride and her maid of honor got on several stops later. An interfaith chaplain performed the ceremony as the train went over the Manhattan Bridge. Riders applauded as the couple were pronounced husband and wife. The groom told the newspaper that he and Sandler chose their wedding venue because they spent so much of their courtship on the subway.

GUYANA

Magistrate suspended

Authorities have suspended a magistrate after he granted a convicted cocaine trafficker a suspended sentence. The Judicial Service Commission said on Friday that it asked Magistrate Alex Moore to step down pending a hearing. Moore recently issued the ruling in the case of businessman Leonard Bacchus, who pleaded guilty to trafficking 60kg of cocaine. Prosecutors have said they plan to appeal. Local laws impose a minimum three-year sentence and a fine on those who plead guilty to or are convicted of drug crimes.

GERMANY

Surveillance loophole found

Legislators investigating the surveillance activities of the US National Security Agency (NSA) have uncovered a legal loophole that allows the Federal Intelligence Service (BND) to spy on citizens. The agency is normally forbidden from eavesdropping on citizens or domestic companies. However, a former BND lawyer told legislators last week that citizens are not protected while working abroad for foreign companies. The government on Saturday confirmed to reporters that work-related calls or e-mails are attributed to the employer. If the employer is foreign, the BND can intercept them. Opposition legislators have accused the government of feigning outrage over alleged NSA spying while condoning illegal surveillance itself.

UNITED STATES

Social media laws mulled

The Supreme Court is to consider a groundbreaking case today about whether death threats posted on Facebook are liable to prosecution or whether threatening comments are protected by constitutional rights to free speech. It is to be the first time the top court’s nine justice — who are not known to have Facebook accounts of their own — will consider the limits of First Amendment protections on free speech on social media.

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