Monday, February 20, 2017

Chilean Congress appropriates 1,000 pesos for the military court

The lower house of the Chilean Congress rejected the annual budget of 8,436,000 pesos for the military court, proposed in the President's message to Congress. Instead it appropriated the negligible sum of 1,000 pesos for 2017, amid congressional criticism of the existence of military justice.

The plenary of the ministers (i.e., members) of the Military Court requested that the Budget Director of the Ministry of the Treasury provide, as soon as possible, the necessary budgetary means required by the Undersecretary of the Armed Forces that will permit the normal functioning of the Military Court, which forms part of the Judicial Branch in Chile and the principal function of which is to hear, as an appeals court, criminal cases against members of the Army, Air Force and Carabineros (Military Police) of Chile.

The only manner in which the requested budget could be reinstated is through the direction of the President, which did not occur at the appropriate time. Consequently, the mixed commission of the Senate approved the budget without the necessary funds for this judicial tribunal.

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