Thursday, September 20, 2007

Supreme Court here we come

Today we filed  an application to recall and stay the issuance of  the mandate in an immigration case, pending the filing of a petition for writ of certiorari with  the U.S. Supreme Court. 

When we got the client's approval to proceed with his appeal,  I was a little hesitant that we did not have a real issue  to pursue, however, in working on this case  the last two days, IO have really found a bona fide conflict in the manner by which the Board of Immigration Appeals handles a motion to  reopen.  

More to follow.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Human Rights Watch Releases New Report on Israeli - Lebanon War

Last week on September 6, 2007, Human Rights Watch ("HRW") released their detailed report  on civilian casualties in the Israeli - Lebanon War of last summer.  In the report, HRW lays the blame from the vast majority of civilian deaths at the doorstep of  Israel's indiscriminate airstrikes, not Hezbollah's shielding as claimed  by Israeli officials.  

Of the approximately 900 civilian deaths inside Lebanon during the July-August 2006 War, HRW investigated more than  500 of the deaths in making their determination in the released report.  

The full report is available here:

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Ninth Circuit En Banc Decision on Indonesian Christian Asylum Claims

Lolong v. Gonzales, 484 F.3d 1173 (9th Cir. 2007) en banc.

Last May, the Ninth Circuit released  their long awaited en banc decision on the fate of thousands of  Indonesian Christians who filed  for asylum premised upon their persecution  "on account" of their religious beliefs.  

In the decision authored by the Honorable Jay S. Bybee, the court held that in the case of Marjorie Konda Lolong, she had nothing to fear back in Indonesia because the government is not "unable or unwilling to control the perpetrators of this violence." Id. at 1180.  The decision opines further, "the government of Indonesia  has  shown its general commitment to freedom of religion and its lack of institutional discrimination against the ethnic Chinese minority."  

The court I believed feared a general  grant of asylum to any and all ethnic Indonesian Christian Chinese.  The larger effect of this en banc decision however is  to give the green light to all pending asylum claims by this persecuted group and they are being denied relief as quickly as the wheels of justice can deliver it.