Virginia school board violated rights of transgender teen, judge rules

In a major victory for trans rights, judge declines board’s request to dismiss case filed by former student Gavin Grimm

A federal judge on Tuesday sided with a transgender teen in Virginia who claims a school board violated his rights when it banned him from using boys’ bathrooms.

In a major victory for trans rights, US district court Judge Arenda Wright Allen declined the Gloucester county school board’s request to dismiss the case filed by former student Gavin Grimm.

Related: White House announces ban on transgender people serving in military

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Georgia accuses Russia of war crimes during 2008 conflict

Tbilisi also alleges human rights violations in closing evidence at European court

Georgia has accused Russia of war crimes, human rights violations and a “rampage” across its territory during the bitter military conflict between the countries almost 10 years ago.

In closing evidence before the European court of human rights in Strasbourg on Wednesday, the Georgian government said Moscow was guilty of multiple violations during the August 2008 fighting.

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Birmingham woman jailed for duping daughter into forced marriage

Mother gets four-and-a-half-year sentence for forcing teenager to wed man in Pakistan, in landmark conviction

A woman from Birmingham has been jailed for four and a half years for duping her 17-year-old daughter into travelling to Pakistan and forcing her to marry a man 16 years her senior.

The 45-year-old, who cannot be named for legal reasons, was found guilty on two counts of forced marriage and a third charge of perjury. The jury returned a not guilty verdict for a further charge of perverting the course of justice.

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Venezuela has fallen to a dictator. But we can help to restore democracy | Reynaldo Trombetta

Nicolás Maduro has brought the country to its knees. The international community must support Venezuelans trying to restore democracy

The descent of Venezuela into a dictatorship has resembled the fable of the boy that cried wolf. Back in July 2000, when Hugo Chávez won his first re-election, many in the opposition, surprised by his sudden rise in popularity, claimed electoral fraud. Since then, it seems, the norm has been for the opposition to accuse the government of stealing elections, without presenting enough evidence to gain the support of the international community. This has made it difficult for many outside Venezuela to label the regime a dictatorship. Until now.

It has never been clearer that Nicolás Maduro – who cynically described this weekend’s vote as “a triumph of democracy” – is a dictator. Dozens of countries throughout Europe and the Americas warned that the fraudulent presidential elections should not occur and are now refusing to recognise the results.

Related: The Observer view on Venezuela’s need for profound change, not a sham poll | Observer editorial

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The next Homeland? The problems with Fauda, Israel's brutal TV hit

The Netflix smash – about a ruthless Israeli unit hunting down terrorists – has been praised for its evenhanded portrayal of the Palestinian conflict. But are there glaring omissions?

Israel’s biggest TV hit series returns to our screens this week, opening with Israel’s biggest nightmare. The second series of Fauda, the political thriller about an Israeli army undercover unit, begins with a bomb explosion at a bus stop. But it gets worse, as it turns out the attack wasn’t ordered by Hamas, but by a new menace – a returnee from Syria who has been training with Islamic State.

That’s how we’re plunged back into Fauda, Arabic for “chaos”, Israel’s international Netflix hit, which the streaming service picked up in 2016. Released on 24 May, the series returns with its tight, testy unit of Arabic-speaking Israeli special force infiltrators who work undercover in the Palestinian West Bank to track and kill wanted terrorists.

You find yourself drawn in. The concept of right and wrong gets erased … it just becomes this action-packed show

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Our laws make slaves of nature. It’s not just humans who need rights | Marina Margil

For decades our laws have been a death sentence for the environment. Now, from the Amazon to Australia, the tide is turning

The Amazon rainforest is often called the earth’s lungs, and generates 20% of the world’s oxygen. Yet in the past half-century nearly a fifth of it has been cut down. The felling and burning of millions of trees is releasing massive amounts of carbon, in turn depleting the Amazon’s capacity to be one of the world’s largest carbon sinks – the natural systems that suck up and store carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.

Related: Can climate litigation save the world?

In 2006 the first law recognising the legal rights of nature was enacted in the borough of Tamaqua, Pennsylvania

Related: Bolivia enshrines natural world’s rights with equal status for Mother Earth

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Rohingya militants massacred Hindus in Myanmar, says Amnesty

Human rights group says accountability for atrocities is just as crucial as for security forces’ crimes

The Rohingya military group Arsa carried out deadly massacres and abductions of the Hindu community in Myanmar’s Rakhine state last year, a new report by Amnesty International has revealed.

Testimony collected by Amnesty from dozens of witnesses and survivors of the attacks in Rakhine in August have detailed how up to 99 Hindu men, women and children were killed by Arsa militants armed with knives, swords and sticks. Only those who agreed to convert to Islam were spared.

Related: ‘Lives will be lost’: 700,000 Rohingya face cyclone season under tarpaulin

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Secret evidence leads to downgrade of convictions over Stoke shooting

CPS lawyer says there is no satisfactory explanation for not disclosing material earlier

Secret evidence that was not disclosed at trial has led to the overturning of the convictions of five men for conspiracy to murder following a shooting in Stoke-on-Trent in 2010.

Although the court of appeal imposed alternative convictions for the lesser offence of conspiracy to commit grievous bodily harm, the men and their lawyers still do not know what the new material reveals.

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'Plainly unconstitutional': New Orleans jail records inmates' calls to lawyers

Prosecutors in the city can and do listen in to conversations that elsewhere are seen as subject to attorney-client privilege

When Gerard Howard was arrested on suspicion of heroin possession, in 2015, the New Orleans district attorney’s office had a problem. The syringe he was found with came back from the lab with no illegal substances detected.

Prosecutors wanted to convict Howard on paraphernalia charges but there was no proof the needle was intended to be used for anything illicit. So they started listening to phone calls between Howard and his then public defender, Thomas Frampton. They found one throwaway but interesting line.

Related: Why are for-profit US prisons subjecting detainees to forced labor? | Azadeh Shahshahani

Related: Trump promises to sign prison reform bill that could free thousands

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MPs push for Myanmar regime to face international criminal court

International development select committee also supports review of UK aid and application of financial sanctions

The UK must support efforts to refer Myanmar’s regime to the international criminal court over evidence of state-sanctioned ethnic cleansing of Rohingya people and human rights abuses, according to MPs on the international development select committee.

They also called for a complete review of UK aid to Myanmar, which was worth £100m in 2018, saying the sums were agreed at the time it appeared the country was on a transition to democracy.

Related: ‘Hallmarks of genocide’: ICC prosecutor seeks justice for Rohingya

Related: ‘Lives will be lost’: 700,000 Rohingya face cyclone season under tarpaulin

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