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Defense Institute of International Legal Studies breaks new ground in Afghanistan: United States legal experts help develop code of military justice in Kabul.

Working with the Afghanistan Ministry of Defense and General Staff lawyers in Kabul, instructors from the Defense Institute of International Legal Studies (DIILS DIILS Defense Institute of International Legal Studies ) broke new ground by finalizing revisions to a draft Afghan Code of Military Justice (ACMJ) in August.

"The objective of this mission was not to teach, but leave behind a bedrock document that would have positive ramifications ramifications nplAuswirkungen pl  far into the future," according to Captain Chris Martin, DIILS instructor. "We conducted two military justice working groups: one focusing on procedural aspects of the ACMJ; and the second focusing on punitive articles," he said. The punitive articles revisions were especially challenging, due to the Afghans' unfamiliarity with the translated excerpts of the United States Uniform Code of Military Justice The Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ) was enacted by Congress in 1950 (10 U.S.C.A. § 801 et seq.) to establish a standard set of procedural and substantive criminal laws for all the U.S. military services. (It went into effect the following year.  provided to them months earlier. For the July-August session, the team began revising a translation of the old Soviet-era military justice code, and then added punitive articles as needed. According to Martin, this proved to be more acceptable to the Afghans, who had an inherent understanding of their former system. The DIILS team accomplished its primary mission by completing draft versions of the procedural and punitive sections of the ACMJ by their 10 August 2005 departure. During their next session, they hope to test this new system by conducting two to three weeks of judges' training and mock trials.

This training was one of a number of significant education events held with the Afghan Ministry of Defense The Afghan Ministry of Defense is an organ of the Central Government of Afghanistan, overseeing the entire Military of Afghanistan. As of 2004, it is headed by Abdul Rahim Wardak, a former mujahideen who also received some military training in the United States.  (MoD) and General Staff lawyers this year, and is part of a larger, on-going, security cooperation initiative requiring DIILS instruction throughout the year. Walter Munroe, DIILS academic director, expects the demand for DIILS training in Afghanistan to continue to grow. In May 2005, DIILS completed a legal seminar in Kabul involving more than fifty military and civilian Afghan leaders focusing on Fiscal, Procurement and Environmental Law. This two-day event, in coordination with the Office of Military Cooperation-Afghanistan (OMC-A), was designed to educate the Afghan legal staffs in the core competencies essential to their daily legal functions. During the next two days, the working group reviewed laws with senior Afghan leaders, including the Judge Advocate General judge advocate general (J.A.G.) n. a military officer who advises the government on courts-martial and administers the conduct of courts-martial. The officers who are judge advocates and counsel assigned to the accused come from the office of the judge advocate  and Deputy Judge Advocate General of the Afghan National Army Afghan National Army (ANA) is a service branch of the Military of Afghanistan that is currently being trained by the to ultimately take the lead in land-based military operations. .

According to Munroe, the Afghans asked for United States help with building support within the MoD for the draft of their national procurement law and its MoD supplement. DIILS, located in Newport, Rhode Island Newport is a city in Newport County, Rhode Island, United States, about 30 miles (48 km) south of Providence. It is the home of Naval Station Newport, housing the United States Naval War College, the Naval Undersea Warfare Center, and a major United States Navy training center. , is currently scheduled to deploy its mobile training teams to Kabul a few more times this year.

DIILS is a joint agency activity reporting directly to the Director of the Defense Security Cooperation Agency The Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA), as part of the United States Department of Defense, provides financial and technical assistance, transfer of defense matériel, training and services to allies, and promotes military-to-military contacts. . The organization is a major part of the Expanded International Military Education and Training Formal or informal instruction provided to foreign military students, units, and forces on a nonreimbursable (grant) basis by offices or employees of the United States, contract technicians, and contractors.  Program, using mobile education teams and resident courses to focus on legal topics relating to the rule of law. The working group reviewed laws with senior Afghan leaders, including the Judge Advocate General and Deputy Judge Advocate General of the Afghan National Army.
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Author:Taylor, C.E.
Publication:DISAM Journal
Date:Sep 22, 2005
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