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PPP rejects bills to revive military courts

ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) on Friday rejected two different bills aimed at getting the extension of military courts for another two years.

The government presented the 28th Constitutional Amendment Bill and the Army Act Amendment Bill 2017 for advice and opinions from all the political parties. The PPP has been a vocal opponent of the extension of military courts for another two years and has completely rejected the government’s proposition.

Earlier there had been reports that the PPP had finally given up some ground and allowed for the extension of the courts. On Thursday evening, they dismissed any such claims through a statement released by PPP Senator Farhatullah Babar. PPP Central Information Secretary Chaudhry Manzoor also confirmed that the party would be sticking to its recommendations.

“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,” read the statement.

National Assembly Speaker Ayaz Sadiq has forwarded the bills to a committee of parliamentary leaders who will finalise a draft after deliberations.

The bills, if implemented, would give military courts another two years to deal with terror-related cases after which they would be transferred to the Anti-Terrorism Court.

The speaker also added, “Reservations of all parties will be addressed and consensus will be reached.”

M M Alam

M. M. Alam is a Pakistan-based working journalist since 1981. Karachi University faculty gold medalist Alam began his career four decades ago by writing for Dawn, Pakistan’s highest circulating English daily. He has worked for region’s leading publications, global aviation periodicals including Rotors (of USA) and vetted New York Times as permanent employee of daily Express Tribune. Alam regularly covers international aviation and defense-related events including Salon Du Bourget (France), Farnborough (United Kingdom), Dubai (UAE). Alam has reported thousands of events and interviewed hundreds of people in Pakistan, UAE, EU, UK and USA. Being Francophone Alam also coordinates with a number of French publications.