Judge halts Trump and Barr law enforcement report, citing commission’s lack of diversity

A federal judge’s ruling on Thursday stopped next month’s expected release of a report from a presidential commission created to study American law enforcement. Judge John Bates ruled that the commission, comprised solely of current and former law enforcement officials, lacked the diversity necessary to address issues plaguing policing. 

None of the 18 commissioners appointed to “study a broad range of issues regarding law enforcement and the criminal justice system,” and then make recommendations to the president through the report, have any background in “criminal defense, civil rights, or community organization,” Bates noted in his decision. 

“Especially in 2020,” Bates wrote, “when racial justice and civil rights issues involving law enforcement have erupted across the nation, one may legitimately question whether it is sound policy to have a group with little diversity of experience examine, behind closed doors, the sensitive issues facing law enforcement and the criminal justice system in

Read More

Judge halts work of Trump police commission after NAACP complaint

CLOSE

While discussing the shooting of Jacob Blake on ‘The Ingraham Angle,’ President Trump said some police officers who shoot unarmed suspects ‘choke.’

USA TODAY

A federal judge Thursday halted the work of a national law enforcement advisory commission authorized by President Donald Trump as part of a legal challenge to the group’s composition and claims that it lacked representation from police reform and civil rights groups.

The order issued by U.S. District Judge John Bates comes weeks before the Presidential Commission on Law Enforcement and the Administration of Justice was due to deliver to Attorney General William Barr its findings on challenges facing local police.

While the The commission was directed to produce a “fresh evaluation of the salient issues affecting American law enforcement and the communities they protect,” civil rights advocates claimed that it has served to support “unfounded yet repeated public assertions” by the president and the

Read More

Amnesty halts India operations citing government reprisals

Human rights watchdog Amnesty International said Tuesday that it was halting its operation in India, citing reprisals from the government and the freezing of its bank accounts by Indian authorities.

Amnesty International India said in a statement that the organization had laid off its staff in India and paused its ongoing campaign and research work on human rights, alleging that Indian authorities froze its bank accounts on suspicions of violating rules on foreign funding.

The statement said that the authorities’ actions were “the latest in the incessant witch-hunt of human rights organizations” by India’s government “over unfounded and motivated allegations,” and that the group’s “lawful fundraising model” was being portrayed as money laundering because it has challenged the “government’s grave inactions and excesses.”

Indian authorities did not immediately confirm whether Amnesty India’s bank accounts had been frozen.

Amnesty India’s executive director, Avinash Kumar, said the accounts were frozen as a

Read More

Amnesty International halts India operations citing government reprisals

Human rights watchdog Amnesty International said Tuesday that it was halting its operation in India, citing reprisals from the government and the freezing of its bank accounts by Indian authorities.

Amnesty International India said in a statement that the organization had laid off its staff in India and paused its ongoing campaign and research work on human rights, alleging that Indian authorities froze its bank accounts on suspicions of violating rules on foreign funding.

The statement said that the authorities’ actions were “the latest in the incessant witch-hunt of human rights organizations” by India’s government “over unfounded and motivated allegations,” and that the group’s “lawful fundraising model” was being portrayed as money laundering because it has challenged the “government’s grave inactions and excesses.”

Indian authorities did not immediately confirm whether Amnesty India’s bank accounts had been frozen.

Amnesty India’s executive director, Avinash Kumar, said the accounts were frozen as a

Read More

Amnesty International halts work in India, blaming government ‘witch hunt’

Amnesty International India employees at their headquarters in Bangalore in February 2019. <span class="copyright">(Aijaz Rahi / Associated Press)</span>
Amnesty International India employees at their headquarters in Bangalore in February 2019. (Aijaz Rahi / Associated Press)

Amnesty International has suspended its work in India after Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government froze the group’s bank accounts over alleged fundraising violations, the human rights organization said Tuesday.

The Nobel Peace Prize-winning watchdog said it has been the target of an “incessant witch hunt” by the Indian government for its work, including campaigning for the rights of citizens in the disputed territory of Kashmir and documenting police abuses.

The group has been hounded by Indian investigators for the past two years, is regularly vilified in the government-friendly media and was finally forced to lay off staff members in what it described as a growing climate of repression.

“For a movement that has done nothing but raise its voices against injustice, this latest attack is akin to freezing dissent,” Avinash Kumar, executive director

Read More