No agreement on two-year extension for military courts: PPP

Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) has not agreed to a two-year extension for military courts, a party spokesperson said, amid media reports it had reached an agreement on the revival of military courts.

"The PPP totally and roundly rejects any statement purportedly issued by any official agency creating a false and erroneous impression of the PPP having agreed to the draft proposals of the government," PPP Senator Farhatullah Babar said in a statement.

Finance Minister Ishaq Dar had earlier said the PPP and other parliamentary parties had agreed to a two-year extension for military courts. “The PPP has withdrawn from its point to appoint sessions or additional sessions judge in the military courts.” 

Military courts in Pakistan have been accused of fostering human rights abuses and criticised for a lack of transparency and accountability. They had ceased to function after expiry of tenure earlier this year.

Military trials of terrorism suspects were legalised in January 2015 with lawmakers and the military arguing that civilian courts were unable to process cases swiftly because many judges feared becoming victims of revenge attacks.

The courts have since delivered 275 convictions, including 161 death sentences, and carried out 12 executions. These courts do not allow the right to appeal and judges are not required to have law degrees or provide reasons for their verdicts.

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