Open menu Close menu Open Search Close search Open sharebox Close sharebox
. . Support our Sponsor

. . Flags of the World Maps of All Countries Home Page Countries Index

Jordan Martial Law Courts
Sources: The Library of Congress Country Studies; CIA World Factbook
    << Back to Jordan National Security

    A state of martial law, in effect since 1967, gave the government authority to detain individuals without charge and to adjudicate specified crimes in the martial law courts. These courts consisted of a panel of three military officers trained in the law. Designated martial law crimes included espionage, bribery of public officials, trafficking in narcotics or weapons, black marketing, and security offenses. Security detainees could be held without charge or brought before the martial law courts for trial. Detainees did not have the right to communicate with their family or legal counsel.

    Although the martial law courts were not bound to observe normal rules of evidence or procedures, in practice these military courts observed the law of criminal procedure and defendants were given most of the rights they were entitled to in civilian courts. Trials were held in public; defendants were represented by counsel and could cross-examine witnesses. It was not customary to grant bail, however, and there was no provision for habeas corpus. Normal avenues of appeal were not open from decisions of the military courts, but such court actions were subject to ratification by the prime minister in his capacity as military governor. The prime minister had the authority to increase, reduce, or annul sentences. Before acting, the prime minister received recommendations on the fairness of a sentence by a legal adviser or the minister of justice.

    In its annual report for 1988, Amnesty International asserted that some proceedings in the martial law courts failed to meet international standards for fair trials. It noted that in some cases it appeared that confessions allegedly extracted under torture or ill treatment were accepted as evidence. The United States Department of State's Country Reports on Human Rights Practices for 1986 observed that the very quick trials and subsequent sentencing of the Communist Party of Jordan leadership suggested that there were politically motivated exceptions to the norms of criminal procedures and rights in the martial law courts.

    Military courts also adjudicated all crimes committed by military personnel, applying military regulations promulgated by the Ministry of Defense pursuant to relevant laws. In these cases, the commanding officer of the armed forces was required to ratify the sentence.

    Data as of December 1989

    NOTE: The information regarding Jordan on this page is re-published from The Library of Congress Country Studies and the CIA World Factbook. No claims are made regarding the accuracy of Jordan Martial Law Courts information contained here. All suggestions for corrections of any errors about Jordan Martial Law Courts should be addressed to the Library of Congress and the CIA.

Support Our Sponsor

Support Our Sponsor

Please put this page in your BOOKMARKS - - - - -

Revised 10-Nov-04
Copyright © 2004-2020 Photius Coutsoukis (all rights reserved)