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A Mexican immigrant fighting President Donald Trump’s attempt to end a program shielding young immigrants from deportation says he is nervous about the case finally being heard by the U.S. Supreme Court.

Martín Batalla Vidal is a lead plaintiff in one of the cases to preserve the Obama-era program known as Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals and has seen his name splashed in legal documents since 2016, when he first sued in New York.

The 29-year-old certified nursing assistant at a rehabilitation clinic for traumatic brain injury in Queens, New York, has described the legal journey since then as stressful, with people sending him hateful messages. He has had to sacrifice days at work so he could go to protests, press conferences and meetings with attorneys.

Even with his worries, Batalla Vidal is hopeful immigrants like him will be able to stay in the country.

“I don’t know what is going to happen,” said Batalla Vidal, who lives with his mother, two brothers and a dog in an apartment at the border of Queens and Brooklyn. “Whatever the outcome is, we know that we have fought hard for it and we will continue fighting. I am trying to be positive.”

The nation’s highest court is scheduled to hear oral arguments on the case Tuesday.

The program protects about 700,000 people, often called “Dreamers,” who were brought to the U.S. illegally as children or came with families that overstayed visas.


Gambia filed a case Monday at the United Nations’ highest court accusing Myanmar of genocide in its campaign against its Rohingya Muslim minority and asking the International Court of Justice to urgently order measures “to stop Myanmar’s genocidal conduct immediately.”

Gambia filed the case on behalf of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation.

Gambia’s justice minister and attorney general, Abubacarr Marie Tambadou, told The Associated Press he wanted to “send a clear message to Myanmar and to the rest of the international community that the world must not stand by and do nothing in the face of terrible atrocities that are occurring around us. It is a shame for our generation that we do nothing while genocide is unfolding right before our own eyes.”

Myanmar officials did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Myanmar’s military began a harsh counterinsurgency campaign against the Rohingya in August 2017 in response to an insurgent attack. More than 700,000 Rohingya fled to neighboring Bangladesh to escape what has been called an ethnic cleansing campaign involving mass rapes, killings and the torching of homes.

The head of a U.N. fact-finding mission on Myanmar warned last month that “there is a serious risk of genocide recurring.”

The mission also said in its final report in September that Myanmar should be held responsible in international legal forums for alleged genocide against the Rohingya.



The Supreme Court is taking up the Trump administration’s plan to end legal protections that shield 660,000 immigrants from deportation, a case with strong political overtones amid the 2020 presidential election campaign.

All eyes will be on Chief Justice John Roberts when the court hears arguments Tuesday. Roberts is the conservative justice closest to the court’s center who also is keenly aware of public perceptions of an ideologically divided court.

It’s the third time in three years that the administration is asking the justices to rescue a controversial policy that has been blocked by several lower courts.

The court sided with President Donald Trump in allowing him to enforce the travel ban on visitors from some majority Muslim countries, but it blocked the administration from adding a citizenship question to the 2020 census.

Roberts was the only member of the court in the majority both times, siding with four conservatives on the travel ban and four liberals in the census case. His vote could be decisive a third time, as well. With Congress at an impasse over a comprehensive immigration bill, President Barack Obama decided to formally protect people from deportation while also allowing them to work legally in the U.S.

But Trump made tough talk on immigration a central part of his campaign and less than eight months after taking office, he announced in September 2017 that he would end DACA.


The International Criminal Court passed its highest ever sentence Thursday, sending a Congolese warlord known as “The Terminator” to prison for 30 years for crimes including murder, rape and sexual slavery.

Bosco Ntaganda was found guilty in July of 18 counts of war crimes and crimes against humanity for his role as a military commander in atrocities during a bloody ethnic conflict in a mineral-rich region of Congo in 2002-2003.

Ntaganda showed no emotion as Presiding Judge Robert Fremr passed sentences ranging from eight years to 30 years for individual crimes and an overarching sentence of 30 years.

The court’s maximum sentence is 30 years, although judges also have the discretion to impose a life sentence. Lawyers representing victims in the case had called for a life term.

Fremr said despite the gravity of the crimes and Ntaganda’s culpability, his convictions “do not warrant a sentence of life imprisonment.”

Ida Sawyer, deputy director of Human Rights Watch’s Africa division, welcomed the ruling.


India's Supreme Court on Saturday ruled in favor of a Hindu temple on a disputed religious ground in the country's north and ordered that alternative land be given to Muslims to build a mosque — a verdict in a highly contentious case that was immediately deplored by a key Muslim body.

The dispute over land ownership has been one of India's most heated issues, with Hindu nationalists demanding a temple on the site in the town of Ayodhya in Uttar Pradesh state for more than a century. The 16th century Babri Masjid mosque was destroyed by Hindu hard-liners in December 1992, sparking massive Hindu-Muslim violence that left some 2,000 people dead.

Saturday's verdict paves the way for building the temple in place of the demolished mosque. As the news broke, groups of jubilant Hindus poured into Ayodhya's streets and distributed sweets to celebrate the verdict, but police soon persuaded them to return to their homes. As night fell, a large number of Hindus in the town lit candles, lamps and firecrackers to celebrate, and police faced a tougher time in curbing their enthusiasm.

The five Supreme Court justices who heard the case said in a unanimous judgment that 5 acres (2 hectares) of land will be allotted to the Muslim community to build a mosque, though it did not specify where. The court said the 5 acres is "restitution for the unlawful destruction of the mosque."

The disputed land, meanwhile, will be given to a board of trustees for the construction of a temple to the Hindu god Ram.


The Nebraska Supreme Court has upheld the convictions and the up to 200-year prison sentence for an Omaha serial rapist.

On Friday, the high court rejected 43-year-old Brandon Weathers’ arguments that his trial lawyer was ineffective and that his constitutional rights had been violated with state authorities collected his DNA against his will after he was convicted of sexually assaulting a child.

That DNA collection linked him to the rapes of four other women in Omaha between 2002 and 2004.

Weathers was found guilty last year of four counts of first-degree sexual assault in those rapes and was sentenced to 160 to 200 years in prison. He was already serving a 50- to 80-year sentence years for raping a 13-year-old girl.



A man arrested on suspicion of plotting to bomb a historic Colorado synagogue is set to be back in court.

Richard Holzer is scheduled to appear in federal court in Denver Friday for a hearing to review the evidence against him and determine whether he should be released from jail.

The 27-year-old was arrested Nov. 1 after the FBI said he accepted what turned out to be phony explosives from undercover agents he had been talking to about the plan to bomb Temple Emanuel in Pueblo.

An undercover agent began talking to him on Facebook in September after investigators say he promoted white supremacy and violence on several accounts.

Holzer is represented by an attorney from the federal public defender’s office, which doesn’t comment on its cases.


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