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Pakistan: Child Marriage Bill Withdrawn

(Jan. 25, 2016) On January 14, 2016, Pakistan’s National Assembly Standing Committee on Religious Affairs and Interfaith Harmony met to discuss the Child Marriage Restraint (Amendment) Bill 2014.  According to a press release, the bill, which was moved by National Assembly Member Marvi Memon, was withdrawn at the end of the discussion. (Press Release, National […]

Pakistan: Prison Rule Requires Condemned to Be Able to Stand on the Scaffold

(Oct. 9, 2015) The Magistrate in Faisalabad, Pakistan, stopped the execution of Abdul Basit over uncertainty on how to hang a person who is incapable of standing up, as required by the Pakistan Prisons Rules of 1978. (Jon Boone, Paraplegic Death Row Prisoner Gets Last-Minute Stay of Execution in Pakistan, GUARDIAN (Sept. 22, 2015).) Abdul […]

Pakistan: Federal Government Plans to Introduce Legislation Prohibiting Apostasy Pronouncements

(Sept. 21, 2015)  According to a September 10, 2015, news report, the Federal Government of Pakistan is considering legislation to prohibit takfir, a religious pronouncement or clerical ruling that declares one Muslim or group of Muslims to be non-believers or apostates.  A government official was reported to have stated, “[u]nder new laws, no one will […]

Pakistan: Constitutional Amendment to Extend Jurisdiction of Superior Courts to Tribal Areas

(Mar. 3, 2015) On February 20, 2015, Pakistan’s Senate Standing Committee on Law and Justice approved a constitutional amendment that would extend the jurisdiction of the Supreme Court and a High Court to Pakistan’s specially administered tribal regions. (Constitutional Amendment: Senate Body Clears Bill on Tribal People’s Rights, EXPRESS TRIBUNE (Feb. 20, 2015).) The amendment, […]

Pakistan: Punjab Government Considers Anti-Child Marriage Law

(Jan. 30, 2015) On January 29, 2015, the Chairperson of the Punjab Provincial Commission on the Status of Women, while speaking at a conference on child marriages in Pakistan, stated that the Punjab Cabinet was considering several amendments to provincial-level marriage laws. According to a news report, the proposed changes include: raising the minimum age […]

Pakistan: Punjab Province Criminalizes the Glorification of Terrorism

(Jan. 23, 2015) On January 20, 2015, Pakistan’s Punjab provincial government promulgated an amendment to a maintenance of public order ordinance that criminalizes expressions of support, sympathy, and glorification of terrorism. (Punjab Maintenance of Public Order Ordinance, No. 31 of 1960, amended by Punjab Maintenance of Public Order (Amendment) Ordinance 2015 (Amended Ordinance), PUNJAB LAWS.) […]

Jordan; Pakistan; United Nations: Experts Warn Against Death Penalty Resumptions

(Jan. 2, 2015) United Nations human rights experts have recently warned of the dangers of the use of the death penalty, even in terrorism cases. The warning was prompted by the resumption of the imposition of capital punishment in Jordan and the end of the moratorium on the practice in Pakistan. Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein, […]

Pakistan: Sindh Provincial Assembly Passes Child Marriage Restraint Bill

(May 23, 2014) On April 29, 2014, the Provincial Assembly of Sindh passed Pakistan’s first law prohibiting child marriages. (Habib Khan Ghori, Sindh PA Passes Landmark Bill Prohibiting Child Marriages, DAWN.COM (Apr. 29, 2014).) The Sindh Child Marriage Restraint Act prohibits child marriages under section 3, which states: Whoever, being a male above eighteen years […]

Pakistan: National Assembly Extends Ordinance on Protection of Pakistan

(Feb. 11, 2014) On February 7, 2014, the National Assembly of Pakistan, the lower house of the country’s legislature, passed a resolution to extend three anti-terrorism ordinances for a 120-day period, including the controversial anti-terrorism law, The Protection of Pakistan Ordinance (PPO). Among other measures, the PPO grants extensive arrest and detention powers to security […]

Pakistan: Province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Establishes Mobile Courts

(Aug. 5, 2013) On July 28, 2013, Peshawar High Court (PHC) Chief Justice Dost Mohammad Khan inaugurated the establishment of mobile courts in the northern Pakistani province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KPK) to hear civil and criminal disputes. The courts are intended to provide “justice at the doorsteps of people.” (Mobile Court Inaugurated: ‘State Bound to […]