Military courts resume for two years after president gives assent

President Mamnoon Hussain signs Constitution's 28th Amendment Bill 2017 and Inquiry Commission Bill


Irfan Ghauri March 31, 2017
CREATIVE: AAMIR KHAN

ISLAMABAD: President Mamnoon Hussain on Friday gave his assent to an amendment in the Constitution granting legal cover to military courts, Radio Pakistan reported on Friday.

The president has signed the Constitution's 23rd Amendment bill 2017 and Inquiry Commission Bill after which the bills have become Acts. The bills had already been passed by parliament.

As per the amendment, military courts will be functional for another two years.

Speaking to The Express Tribune, a spokesperson from the President House said that the formal approval for the bill was given on Thursday night.

Along with the constitutional amendment, President Mamnoon also signed amendments to the Pakistan Army Act 1952, passed by parliament as a separate bill.

Military courts to get thumbs up today

Military courts were set up through the 21st amendment, which was passed by both houses of parliament on January 6, 2015. Consensus on the courts was reached in an APC convened in the aftermath of the grisly attack on the Army Public School in Peshawar.

The amendment had a sunset clause according to which it expired on January 7, 2017. Around 12 military courts were set up for a period of two years for the speedy prosecution of terror suspects.

Despite showing their reservations, opposition parties in the lower house of parliament had verbally supported the 28th Amendment Bill 2017 earlier this month.

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