ISLAMABAD, (Pakistan Point News - APP - 25th Jan, 2017 ) : The Research Society of International Law (RSIL) in collaboration with the International Committee of Red Cross (ICRC) has launched a report on International Humanitarian Law and Preventive Detention. Advisor to the Prime Minister on National Security Lt Gen (Retd) Nasir Janjua, speaking as chief guest on the occasion, lauded the RSIL's research team for focusing on conflict law studies given the challenges of non-state actors who were waging a war against Pakistan.
He said the Pakistan Army complied with International Humanitarian Law principles despite absence of legislative instruments in the beginning but later on the legal instruments such as Action in Aid of Civil Power Regulations (AACPR), Protection of Pakistan Act (POPA) and others became important to implement the constitutional mandate under Article 245 of the Constitution. RSIL Executive Director Jamal Aziz in his welcome address explained the distinction between the law of peace and the law of war and noted that a conflict paradigm applied to military operations being conducted in FATA and PATA.
Oves Anwar, Director of the Conflict Law Centre, explained the legal shift that takes place when the state engages in military operations against non-state actors. "This shift leads to a disengagement of the human rights protections that exist in peace time and engage humanitarian protections instead. Without realizing this important difference, the standards and language of critique will not be shaped appropriately," he stated. Moghees ud Din Khan, a researcher, spoke on understanding International Humanitarian Law (IHL).
He noted the relevance and significance of IHL in the domestic context. He noted that the greatest beneficiary from such work would be members of the Armed Forces whose international legal obligations were delineated in the report. RSIL President Ahmer Bilal Soofi elaborated on the need to increase awareness regarding international law at provincial and district levels to ensure compliance. He also commented on the need to enhance Pakistan's reputation as a responsible state that upholds rule of law. Reto Stocker, Head of Delegation ICRC, commended the efforts of the RSIL team and pledged to continue supporting research relating to the study of conflict tin Pakistan. A number of diplomats, United Nations representatives, high level members of the military as well as members of various think tanks and other stakeholders attended the moot.