UK

Desperate Afghan judges ask UK high court for review of government’s refusal to allow them entry

The alarming case of two Afghan judges, refused entry into the UK after the Taliban took over Afghanistan, is instructive. The two face the very real possibility that they will be found and executed by the Taliban, and yet the UK government has flatly refused to allow them in. Among other things, this illustrates how vulnerable judges, as a group, sometimes are, persecuted precisely for the work that they do as judges. When they seek asylum, it is difficult to say that they are simply ‘making things up’, an accusation often levelled at other would-be refugees.

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Two Afghan judges, both in hiding and known only as ‘S’ and ‘AZ’, have successfully asked the high court to reconsider a UK government decision refusing to allow them to relocate to the UK.

Concerns over climate change stalemate court decision on UK financial support to Mozambique

A major decision by a senior UK court has split down the middle on whether that country should be financially backing a massive liquefied natural gas discovery in Mozambique. The case revolved around environmental questions and the climate change undertakings reached in terms of the 2015 Paris agreement. The Mozambique gas field is exceptionally rich and has the potential to catapult that country onto the list of the top five global suppliers of a growing international demand.

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The plan that has been approved is for the UK government to invest more than $1billion in the massive offshore gas project scheduled for Mozambique’s Rovuma Basin. It is said that this is one of the largest single financing packages ever offered by the UK government to a foreign fossil fuel project.

Courts consider litigation by deaf drivers, TV viewers

The rights of deaf people have been considered by the courts in two recent decisions, one in Zambia and the other in the UK. In the first, the applicants challenged Zambian provisions in terms of which deaf drivers are not entitled to driving licences. In the second, a deaf woman claimed the UK government discriminated against her and others in her position by not providing a British Sign Language interpreter for government live briefings to the public about Covid-19.

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The decision in the Zambian high court case bitterly disappointed the executive director of Zambia Deaf Youth and Women (ZDYW), Frankson Musukwa. Acting on his own behalf and as a representative of ZDYW, Musukwa had hoped for much more from the case.

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