Pakistan to set up courts to deal with gender violence

Pakistan’s top judge has vowed to set up more than 100 gender-based violence courts in the country.

Chief Justice Asif Saeed Khosa said the Supreme Court proposes to set up “116 gender-based violence courts and also child courts in every district in Pakistan”.

The courts “will be designed to look entirely different both in their infrastructure and working than other courts,” he told judges in Islamabad on Wednesday. He offered no further details, and Supreme Court officials said the plan is still being discussed.

‘A first step’

Setting up gender-based violence courts is a “first step”, said lawyer Benazir Jatoi — though she warned that without clear mechanisms and effective implementation it was too soon to celebrate.

Ms. Jatoi cited violence against a women’s centre that was briefly set up in Multan. “The present government… programmes stopped the funding for the centre,” she said. “The newly-promised… courts should not meet the same fate.”


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