2022 has been an incredible year for RSIL. By working with justice sector actors and other government and non-government stakeholders across the country, RSIL was able to extend its legacy of working towards the strengthening of rule of law in Pakistan. 2022 was also RSIL’s most successful year on the digital front. Using a combination of research publications, podcasts, blog posts and webinars, we were able to garner over 1.0 million engagements through our website and social media platforms.

As we step into 2023, the RSIL team is dedicated more than ever to continue working for Pakistan’s development through legal research, policy-making and capacity-building.

Anti-Money Laundering & Countering the Financing of Terrorism

For the past few years, RSIL’s Centre for Criminal Justice Sector Reform & Capacity Building (C3) has been engaged in initiatives focused on increasing Pakistani’s capacity in tackling money laundering and terrorism financing. This year, we carried on with our work by engaging with various government and non-government stakeholders.

Some of our trainings this year included:

  • Training on Prosecution of Foreign Terrorist Fighters at Center for Professional Development of Public Prosecutors (CPD) Punjab
  • Working Groups for Development of Charging Standards for TF Offences
  • Training of Trainers on Anti-Money Laundering and Countering Financing of Terrorism for Prosecutors (Punjab, KPK, Sindh, Balochistan)
  • In addition to these sessions, we also developed training modules on AML/CFT for organisations such as Sindh Judicial Academy, NACTA, Balochistan Judicial Academy and Centre for Professional Development of Public Prosecutors
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International Conference on AML/CFT

RSIL, with support from the National FATF Secretariat, Government of Pakistan, hosted an international conference on Pakistan’s implementation of the AML/CFT regime under the FATF Action Plan 2018-2022. The conference brought together key stakeholders from the Government of Pakistan as well as domestic and international experts to discuss the significant progress Pakistan made towards its international commitments in this domain. It also focused on the increasing importance of AML/CFT standards in global governance including in international financial institutions, sanctions regimes, and international cooperation and investment. Furthermore, emerging risks, challenges, and opportunities in the AML/CFT realm such as the regulation of cryptocurrency and fintech, the impact the FATF regime on financial inclusion, and the way forward in terms of improving effectiveness of its AML/CFT frameworks, with a focus on the investigation, prosecution and adjudication of money laundering and terrorism financing offences in Pakistan were also discussed.

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War Law, International Politics and Pakistan

The Conflict Law Centre (CLC) has traditionally focused exclusively on the Laws of War. This year, CLC expanded its scope and output considerably in 2022 becoming a go-to resource for opinions, information, and new perspectives on anything and everything related to Pakistan and war law, international relations and foreign policy. Some of the thematic areas we covered include Social Media and War, Bagram Detainees, Emerging Tech and Drone Warfare, and Nuclear Stability in South Asia.

In light of the ongoing Russia-Ukraine conflict, we covered the operation’s legality under international law, studying the renewed global interest in sanctions, and the dangers of the continued escalation. Our writers also examined potential impacts on Pakistan’s trade as well as the “two-tier” asylum system exposed by the conflict.

On the digital front, the CLC launched IHL in Film and CLC Shorts explainer series.

Finally, we continued our work on the DLP Forum where we looked at issues such as International Humanitarian Law in Practice, Armed Conflict and Cultural Heritage, and Islamic Law and International Humanitarian Law.

Business and Human Rights

The Centre for Human Rights at RSIL has been at the forefront of research and stakeholder engagement in the field of business and human rights in Pakistan. In the past couple of years, we played a central role in the development of Pakistan’s National Action Plan (NAP) on Business and Human Rights, as well as a Monitoring and Review Guide for the NAP Implementation Committee. This year, we built on that by conducting consultation sessions in Lahore, Karachi, Quetta and Peshawar to supplement the Government’s activities in implementing the NAP on BHR in Pakistan. This project seeks to identify ways in which national human rights institutions may play a significant role in protecting human rights within the business context as well.

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Global Governance & Pakistan

Consolidating our experience of working on Pakistan’s journey through FATF Greylist and spreading awareness about the increasing importance of Global Governance in the world today, RSIL formally launched its Global Governance initiative. Global Governance Initiative (GGI) studies international organisations and institutions, as well as the rules and regulations that serve as contours of governance. In an era where international order is maintained via observance of rules within a specific legal architecture, it is increasingly important to study, analyse and participate in the rule- making to ensure all interests are represented.

This year, the GGI published a report providing an overview of Pakistan’s FATF progress over the past four years, as well as a policy brief exploring the global sanctions regime. We also published a special podcast on the increasing popularity of sanctions in today’s multi-polar world.

Launch of DataLab

2022 saw the launch of RSIL’s DataLab, an initiative focused on enhancing the quality of our existing and future research by using data analytics and data visualisation. DataLab aims to assist government agencies and other stakeholders in making effective policies and policy recommendations by creating a culture of data-driven decision.

Climate Change & Environment

Pakistan has routinely been cited as one of most vulnerable countries to the impacts of climate change. To fill the void on discourse seeking legal solutions to issues of climate change, RSIL launched its Climate & Environment Initiative (CEI). The CEI published a series of blogs, podcasts and book discussion webinars on themes such as Climate Change & Human Rights, Biodiversity, and Air Pollution.

 

In addition to our regular content, CEI also published a special brief on Pakistan’s perspective on the conversations on Loss & Damage Finance. Lastly, in the wake of the 2022 floods in Pakistan, CEI organised a Climate Crisis Simulation for university students to encourage critical thinking about climate change related policy issues.

Symposium on Gilgit Baltistan

The most frequent retort to Pakistan’s protests about the treatment of Kashmiris in Indian-Occupied Kashmir is that it operates in much the same way in Gilgit Baltistan. While that claim is erroneous in many ways, legally and politically, Pakistan has not yet decided what to do about Gilgit Baltistan. It signalled its intention to declare the region a fifth province in 2020, however little has been done in making this a reality. This symposium attempted to better understand Pakistan’s relationship with Gilgit Baltistan by amplifying the voices of those from the area and analysing the issues in how Pakistan has governed the region.

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Capacity Building Efforts

Capacity building and increasing awareness about international law has been at the heart of RSIL’s mission since our inception. In addition to our engagements with government and non-government stakeholders, RSIL also focuses on enhancing the capabilities of students and young professionals. In this regard, we conducted our annual International Law Certification Course where we held sessions on topics such as the Significance of International Law. Criminal Justice System of Pakistan, International Law and Foreign Policy. International Humanitarian Law, Climate Change, and Humans Rights. We also conducted sessions on skills and career development. guiding our participants on public speaking, CV drafting, interview skills and graduate studies abroad.

RSIL also collaborated with the Mantaq Center for Research to launch the Tadveen Legislative Drafting and Legal Research Program. Tadveen aims to uncover and overcome shortcomings in Pakistan’s legal framework by setting up a Research Clinic at the National Assembly of Pakistan, which will involve the collaborative efforts of Legislators and Research Associates formulate and draft legislative proposals on priority issues.

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Our most read blogs

RSIL routinely publishes blog posts under the themes of Human Rights, Criminal Justice Sector Reform and War Law and International Politics. Check out our five most read blog posts from 2022.

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