June 16, 2003

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Iranian Protests  (4:05)
In Tehran, for the past six nights in a row, Iranian students have taken to the streets to protest against the present government, demanding more civil freedoms. The United States again has endorsed anti-government protests in Iran, after Tehran accused Washington of meddling in its domestic affairs. Pejmun Hagigi has more.

Update from Washington  (3:44)
The Supreme Court ruled today by a six-to-three vote today, to limit the government’s ability to force criminal defendants to take anti-psychotic medicine that will make them competent to stand trial. In another vote of seven-to-two, the court ruled that the right to free speech does not trump Congress’ goal of limiting what it called the “corrosive” effects of corporate money in politics.  Josh Chaffin Reports from the Supreme Court.

Ousting Governor Davis?  (4:20)
Conservative activists in California claim they are on the verge of a revolution by ousting current Governor Gray Davis. They say they have gathered over half of the million signatures necessary to allow voters to decide weather or not to end Davis’s term 3 years early. A recent poll suggests Davis has the lowest approval rating in State history. But women’s rights groups oppose the recall. They say the recalls backers – including a California Republican Congressman Darrell Issa, who has put over half a million dollars to the effort – are intent to follow a national trend of respecting a woman’s right to an abortion. Mitch Jeserich reports from Sacramento.

Women’s Rights in Iraq  (4:19)
In an embarrassing twist for the US and UK governments, this weekend, Biological experts working for the British Government have concluded that two trailers found in northern Iraq did not make germs for biological warfare, but gas for balloons. Adnan Pachachi, a former Iraqi foreign minister who returned to Iraq last month after more than 30 years of exile, criticized the US military on Saturday for its increasingly aggressive operations in Iraq, stating that they should be suspended until the interim Iraqi government is formed. Meanwhile women’s groups in Iraq are showing concern that religious and political groups who have organized into a political force in Iraq may infringe on women’s rights should it get in power. Fariba Nawa reports.

Immigrant Rights  (3:07)
In Houston today, a woman suspected of leading the immigrant-smuggling ring, which made national headlines, when 19 immigrants were found dead and abandoned in the back of a commercial truck was arrested. Since the tragedy, immigrants rights organizations have stepped up the call to protect immigrants. On Saturday, a coalition of labor, religious, community and immigrants rights organizations kicked off Houston’s mobilization plans for the Immigrant Workers Freedom Ride – part of a national effort to build widespread support for reforms to current immigration laws. Shannon Young files this report from Houston, Texas.


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