Oves Anwar



Muhammad Oves Anwar joined RSIL in December 2011 and has been serving as the Society’s Director of Research since 2017. In this capacity he leads RSIL’s three research centres and oversees all project design, implementation, and delivery. In September 2015, Mr. Anwar helped found the Conflict Law Centre (CLC) at RSIL and served as its first Director. In January 2018, he led efforts to establish a dedicated law and technology unit (LAWGIC), which paved the way for RSIL’s forays in the digital realm developing customized software, animations, videos, and podcasts. In 2020, Mr. Anwar was instrumental in launching two further centres at RSIL – the Centre for Human Rights (CHR) and the Centre for Criminal Justice Reform & Capacity Building (C3).

During his tenure as the Society’s Director of Research, Mr. Anwar has overseen the largest legal study of Pakistan’s state practice on human rights for the Ministry of Human Rights. He has led initiatives on Business and Human Rights including the drafting of a Zero Draft of a National Action Plan on Business and Human Rights for the Government of Pakistan. He led C3’s partnership with the Sindh Judicial Academy on the training of over 250 judges, prosecutors, and law enforcement officials on Anti-Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism. He helped develop the national Handbook on Criminal Investigations in Pakistan for the National Police Bureau on orders of the Supreme Court of Pakistan. Additionally, Mr. Anwar’s research has fed into the drafting of several federal statutes including the Anti-Terrorism Act, 1997 and the Investigation for Fair Trial Act 2013.

Mr. Anwar is currently a Senior Fellow at the Centre of Excellence for International Law at the National Defence University, Islamabad. He also provides legal advice to a variety of Government Departments at the Federal and Provincial levels across Pakistan. He is also a member of the Prime Minister’s Working Group of Experts on Pakistan’s International Investment Regime Reforms. He routinely lectures at the National Defence University, Islamabad, the Pakistan Foreign Service Academy, the Pakistan Naval War College, and the Federal, KP, Punjab, and Sindh Judicial Academies.

Mr. Anwar’s research interests include public international law, international human rights law, international humanitarian law, counter-terrorism law and nuclear law. He also focusses on criminal justice sector reform and constitutional law.

Mr. Anwar is also a co-host of two podcasts ‘The Right’, the official podcast of the Centre for Human Rights, and ‘@War’, the official podcast of the Conflict Law Centre at RSIL.

Previously, Mr. Anwar has served as an Associate to the Office of the Legal Advisor, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Pakistan and as a Consultant to the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, Vienna, Austria.

Mr. Anwar’s publications include:

  • A Handbook of Criminal Investigations in Pakistan 2021. National Police Bureau & the Law and Justice Commission of Pakistan.
  • The Investigation Process and Trial Procedure in Pakistan 2021. UNODC.
  • Case File Management in Criminal Investigations 2021. UNODC.
  • Interview, Arrest, and Interrogation under Pakistani Law 2021. UNODC.
  • The Evidentiary Value of Trace Evidence in Pakistan 2021. UNODC.
  • Evidence Collection, Preservation, and Analysis in Pakistan 2021. UNODC.
  • A Background to Terrorism in Sindh 2021. UNODC.
  • Guide for the Effective Investigation and Prosecution of Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing in Pakistan 2020. RSIL and the American Bar Association – Rule of Law Initiative.
  • Cyber Surveillance and Big Data: Pakistan’s Legal Framework and the Need for Safeguards 2020. RSIL.
  • Legal Review of Pakistan’s International Human Rights Obligations and their Domestic Implementation 2019. Ministry of Human Rights, Pakistan.
  • Good Decision-Making under Pakistani Law: A Guide for Civil Servants 2018. Konrad Adenauer Stiftung.
  • Urban Violence in Karachi: A Legal and Situational Analysis 2018. RSIL.
  • A Legal Reference Guide for the Pakistan Army: A Law and Police Handbook on Major Contemporary Challenges 2017. RSIL.
  • Human Rights and Pakistan’s Counter-Terrorism Legislative Landscape 2017. RSIL.
  • The Impact of Devolution on Legislative Reform relating to Law & Order in Pakistan: A Policy Brief on Determining Legislative Competence after the 18th Constitutional Amendment 2017. Konrad Adenauer Stiftung.
  • A Handbook on Police Laws and Criminal Procedure 2016. National Police Bureau.
  • A Manual on Targeting in Air Combat Operations during Non-International Armed Conflicts 2016. RSIL.
  • Towards Protecting Health Care in Karachi: A Legal Review 2016. ICRC.
  • The Case for Change: A Review of Pakistan’s Anti-Terrorism Act 1997. RSIL.

Mr. Anwar holds an LL.B (Hons.) from the University of London, an LL.M with Distinction from the School of Oriental and African Studies, an LL.M in International Legal Studies from the University of Vienna, and a Diplôme d’universitéin International Nuclear Law from the International School of Nuclear Law, University of Montpellier.


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