Military offenders can appeal in civilian courts: Khawaja Asif

Military offenders can appeal in civilian courts: Khawaja Asif

  1. Minister of Defence,

According to the Minister of Defence, “We have never attacked military or civilian installations, in response to arrest warrants.”

On Friday, Defence Minister Khawaja Asif clarified that civilian courts, including high courts, and the Supreme Court of Pakistan, could challenge the verdicts, of the proposed military courts.

This clarification comes amidst an ongoing debate, in the country regarding the legality, and reasoning behind the government’s announcement, that arsonists from the May 9 attacks, would be tried under army laws. The debate is currently, taking place in the country.

During an interview with Al Jazeera, the Minister of Defence stated that all criminals prosecuted and convicted, by the military courts would have, the right to contest the judgment, at the highest and most apical court in the country.



His comments were made in, consideration of the current state of affairs, following the violent, demonstrations that broke, out on May 9 in response to, the arrest of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan. Those protests were, sparked by Khan’s incarceration.

After PTI workers and, supporters stormed, military posts on May 9, which the army, branded as “Black Day,” the top, brass of the military threatened, on May 15 to try, the protestors and, their abettors under appropriate laws, including, the Pakistan Army, Act, and the Official Secrets Act. This was in response to the fact, that May 9 was dubbed, by the army as “Black Day.”

Asif claimed that members, of the “PTI miscreants” carried out the attacks on public and, government buildings, as well as on military sites, following a carefully crafted strategy.

“Taking such actions is the same as starting a war against Pakistan,” the official said. Those individuals who carried, out attacks,on military installations, military bases, or the homes of military members will have, their cases heard in the military, courts in accordance, with the directives laid, out in the Constitution, he continued.

According to the federal minister, “armed groups” affiliated with the PTI attacked military, posts on May 9 during the violent episodes that took place in Rawalpindi, Mianwali, and Lahore.

“Despite the fact that many members of my political party, and my leader, the three-time Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, were incarcerated, we never engaged in a violent form of politics. On arrests, we have never launched attacks, against either military or civilian installations.


The defense minister declared that those who attacked military and civilian facilities were foreign foes. We may disagree on politics, but that doesn’t give anyone the right to assault the government or public property.

The coalition administration, he continued, is not creating new courts and laws; rather, the necessary legislation for trying those responsible for attacks on the state, facilities already exists.

He said that the administration, was working to restore order and that everything should, return, to normal within the next several days.

The News reported the day before that sources familiar with the matter had said, the government is considering forming three military courts under the Pakistan, Army Act and the Official Secret Act to try the civilians, who attacked military installations, set fire to Jinnah House, and defamed, and disgraced the armed forces, as part of a global campaign.

According to the reports, the military tribunals would be constituted, under the 2015 revision of the Pakistan Army Act (Amendment 9).

They also mentioned that the National Assembly had passed the law on January 6th, 2015. Civilians accused of terrorism can now be, tried in special military, courts thanks to this change.

Military offenders can appeal in civilian courts: Khawaja Asif
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