Athens – Still early in its existence as the highest court of the Athenian Federation, the Supreme Court faces its biggest case to date. Dealing with matters of civil rights as well as the status of Imperial law to Regional law, the ruling will almost definitely create multiple legal precedents and will have a lasting impact on how the Federation is governed. This is in addition to determining who may legally sit on the throne of the Kingdom of Syria.
The dispute arose upon the death of His Royal Majesty King Faisal III. The late King left behind two children, his daughter Princess Lateefah and his son Prince Bashim. Under Syrian succession law the throne will pass to the closest male heir. Under this law Prince Bashim is the new King of Syria. Princess Lateefah has however challenged this law by pointing out it conflicts with the equal rights guaranteed under the Constitution of the Athenian Federation which the Kingdom of Syria acknowledged as the supreme law of the land. As the eldest child this would make Princess Lateefah the first Queen of Syria.
Both the Imperial Court in Damascus and the Regional Court for the Kingdom of Syria have found in favour of Princess Lateefah. Prince Bashim has however filed his own suit in the Royal Court of Damascus which ruled that Athenian law cannot override a Basic Law of the Kingdom of Syria. This ruling was upheld by the Royal High Court. These conflicting rulings by competing courts have escalated the matter to the Supreme Court in Athens. Princess Lateefah’s team is likely to argue that fundamental rights under the Athenian constitution must be considered universally applicable. Prince Bashim’s team is likely to argue that an Imperial judge overriding the internal governance of a region breaks regional sovereignty under that same constitution.
Attempts by the Imperial Palace and neighbouring Union of Kurdistan have failed to bring about a resolution outside of court.
Beyond the legal dispute, many also fear an outbreak of violence if the Supreme Court finds in favour of the Princess. Like her father, Princess Lateefah is considered very progressive and holds little respect for religious and conservative tradition. Prince Bashim however is deemed very pious and enjoys the support of many Sunni clergy. Fears of attempted terrorist attacks have already resulted in an increased Imperial presence at Imperial facilities and the homes of employees. Princess Lateefah has been granted protection by the Imperial Guard for the duration of the trial. The first time someone who is not a senior member of the Imperial government has been granted such protection.