Pak legal experts say Jamaat-ud-Dawa cannot appeal to ICJ against UN sanctions

December 15th, 2008 - 12:00 pm ICT by ANI  

Lahore, Dec.15 (ANI): Legal experts in Pakistan have said that the banned Jamaat-ud-Dawa cannot approach or appeal to the International Court of Justice (ICJ) to overturn the sanctions imposed on it by the United Nations Security Council and the Pakistan Government.
It may be recalled that Jamaat-ud-Dawa chief Hafiz Muhammad Saeed had claimed that the organization would seek the arbitration of the ICJ after the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) placed sanctions on them.
Saeeds son, Talha Saeed, also said that a legal challenge would be made in the ICJ against the crackdown, adding that there was no moral or legal justification for the sanctions.
Legal experts, however, told the Daily Times that the ICJ could only entertain states, adding that individuals; non-governmental organisations; parts of a federal state; corporations; UN organs; and self-determination groups were excluded from direct participation in cases.
However, a state may bring a case against another state in a situation where diplomatic protection is brought into question, on behalf of one of its nationals or corporations, they said.
Constitutional law expert SM Zafar said the crackdown against the organization was in accordance with a resolution of the UNSC, and therefore, no court could be moved to take action.
He said that the only way to overturn the councils decision was a lengthy procedure in which they may request the UNSC to de-list them.
He also said that this was the only way and no other legal forum was available, including the ICJ.
He also said that Pakistan would not be able to take the case before the ICJ, adding that the only way that would have been possible was if any member from the UN had vetoed the resolution.
Another legal luminary AK Dogar said that the Jamaat-ud-Dawa could not bring the case before the ICJ, and if it wanted to challenge the actions of the Pakistan Government, they would have to go through the high courts and Supreme Court.
He said that if the organization challenged the governments actions in the ICJ, the countries sovereignty would be questioned.
He claimed that the government had used illegal means to detain the outfits leaders.
Barrister Zafarullah Khan told the Daily Times that the ICJ did not allow any cause of action from an individual against a state.
He also said that without evidence, the governments actions were in violation of Article 20 of the Constitution.
The article grants every citizen the right to profess, practice and propagate his/her religion, and every religious denomination and sect has the right to establish, maintain and manage its religious institutions.
Pakistans Permanent Representative to the UN Abdullah Hussain Haroon, on Sunday, said that the only way for individuals or organisations to appeal to the UNSC was through the Government of Pakistan. (ANI)

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