Pak Military Courts come to an end

Rawalpindi [Pakistan], Jan. 9 : Military Courts in Pakistan have come to an end on the expiry of their mandated period after hearing 274 cases and awarding 161 death sentences during their two-year-long tenure.

A total of 12 convicted persons were executed, said the Inter-Service Public Relation in a statement. The court awarded imprisonment of varying duration to 113 convicts. The cases were dealt through due process of law in military courts. The disposal of cases through military courts has yielded positive effects towards reduction in terrorist's activities.

Pakistan's Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan had earlier on Saturday said there are no plans by the government to extend the term of military courts as the term expires, adding that the cases would be transferred to anti-terrorism courts.

The 21st amendment to the Constitution of Pakistan was passed by both the National Assembly of Pakistan and Senate of Pakistan on January 6, 2015, and received the assent of the President on January 7, 2015.

The decision to amend the Constitution came after the 2014 Peshawar school massacre. The amendment established speedy trial military courts for terrorist offenses, waging war against Pakistan, and acts threatening the security of Pakistan.

The duration of these courts was two years. The government had earlier, at the time of the amendment, promised to revamp the judicial system and introduce new clauses in the existing laws to protect judges, witnesses and prosecutors.

It has been reported that the government is currently working on a new draft law in this regard. Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif's Special Assistant on Human Rights Barrister Zafarullah Khan said that the Interior Ministry is dealing with this issue directly and they do not have further details in this regard.

Source: ANI