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Pakistani Cabinet Approves New Draft Counterterrorism Laws

Local residents search for their belongings in the rubble of destroyed houses following a terrorist attack near a police station in the Lakki Marwat district of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province in 2011.
Pakistan's cabinet has adopted new draft counterterrorism laws aimed at making the financing of terrorism a crime punishable by the freezing of bank accounts and property seizures.

Under the proposed measures, courts would be able to admit telephone and electronic communications as evidence.

Analysts say the drafts, if approved by parliament, would substantially change the way terrorism suspects are investigated and prosecuted.

Officials say the proposals are an attempt to strengthen the ability of Pakistani prosecutors to convict suspected terrorists. Hundreds of suspects are arrested every year, but few are convicted.

Based on reporting by Associated Press of Pakistan and BBC