ICJ asks Koirala to amend Nepal Army law

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Kathmandu, Dec 11: International Commission of Jurists (ICJ) has told the Nepal government that there were over a dozen flaws in the Military Act 2006 which need to be amended to make the law compatible with international human rights standards, media reports said.

''We therefore set out our concerns about the compliance of provisions of the Army Act with international standards and the ICJ's further recommendations for amendments or for other actions and interpretations to ensure the Military Act is applied in a way that help protects the human rights of the people of Nepal,'' Kantipur quoted the letter written by ICJ Secretary General Nicholas Howen to Prime Minister Girija Prasad Koirala as saying.

Copies of the letter have also been sent to the Speaker and Parliamentarians.

The Geneva-based global body, which advocates promotion and protection of human rights through rule of law, said the law has not adequately addressed the issue of immunity from prosecution and the need to combat immunity in the armed forces for serious human rights abuses.

Besides, ICJ further said the act fails to ensure fair trials in Court Martial proceedings.

''Reform of the Military Act should go hand in hand with addressing the system of accountability within the Army itself.

Serious human rights violations should not go unpunished but be addressed by the civilian courts,'' ICJ said in the letter to the Prime Minister.

Nepal Army was like the King's private army untill he was suspended last year, ICJ added.


UNI

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