Death penalty applicable to facilitators, abettors, handlers of terrorists: legal experts

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Persons, found involved in helping militants in carrying out terror attacks (facilitators), are liable to be sentenced to death in accordance with the law of the land, and those arrested by the security forces for the Bacha Khan University carnage will be dealt with accordingly.

This was stated by senior lawyer Salim Shah Hoti on Sunday. He said military courts had been set up after the passage of 21st Amendment in Jan 2015 to proceed with terror-related cases.

After lifting of the moratorium on death penalty through an executive order following the Army Public School attack in Dec 2014, these courts were authorised to sentence to death facilitators, abettors and handlers of the terrorists without any distinction.

The interior ministry, he said, was required to send the case of facilitators arrested by security forces for their involvement in the attack at Bacha Khan University to the military courts because the law applied to them.

Another senior lawyer, Ilyas Orakzai said that although the death penalty law applied to the facilitators, “there is an urgent need to create awareness in this regard as in some cases people mistakenly offer hospitality or give a ride to the suspect without knowing who he was taking along”.

Advocate Shabbir Khalil said that facilitators should be tried under due process of the law. He added that the facilitators should be given a lawyer to defend their case in order to ensure a fair trial.

According to advocate Mukhtiar Ali, the legal fraternity did not support facilitators or abettor and only wanted a fair trial. “We fully support the execution of the facilitators and their handlers who wilfully extend support and assistance to terrorists,” he said.

Advocate, Jawad Ali, said the law of the land was clear about sentencing facilitators to death. He added that the public should be properly informed about the law to make them aware about the matter.

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