In accordance to article 116 of the Constitution, the Judiciary is an independent branch of the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan. The judiciary is comprised of one Supreme Court, Appealing Courts and Primary Courts. The Judiciary is headed by the Supreme Court, which is in charge of Afghanistan’s court system and judges
The Supreme Court is comprised of a High Council composed of Justices including Chief Justice, General Administration of Judiciary and a number of other departments which carry out related duties. The Law on the Organization and Jurisdiction of the Judiciary approved in 2005 describes the composition of the Judiciary as below:
- Supreme Court
- Appealing Courts
- Primary Courts
The High Council of the Supreme Court constitutes the highest authority of the Judiciary which has the below powers:
- Taking measures on criminal and disciplinary offences by judges.
- Assessment on conformity of laws with the Constitution and their interpretation.
- Revising the rulings of the courts.
- Proposing for draft law on regulating the judicial affairs.
- Studying reasons and making decision on extraditing criminals to foreign states.
- Resolving courts conflict of jurisdiction and submitting jurisdiction of resolving a case from one court to the other.
- Evaluating the courts inquiries on judicial issues and providing responses accordingly.
- Ensuring uniformity in judicial treatment.
- Approving rules and regulations to regulate matters concerning judicial issues.
- Preparing the budget for the judiciary in consultation with the Executive.
- Leading and controlling the administrative activities of courts.
- Managing of human resources related issues of the judges.
- Evaluating the results of judicial scrutiny and studies and taking measures to remove defects and coordinate courts’ procedures.
- Taking appropriate measures for enhancing the knowledge and experiences of judges.
- Preparing annual statistic report of all courts judicial activities.
- Other duties and jurisdictions which are delegated to Supreme Court.
Judicial Structures in Afghanistan
- Supreme Court: The Supreme Court has four Dewans (Chambers): General Criminal Dewan, Public Security Dewan, Civil and Public Rights Dewan, and Commercial Dewan. Two Supreme Court Justices, a number of judicial counsellors, judicial reporters and administrative staff serve in each Dewan. Each Dewan is headed by a SC Justice selected on rotating basis by the Chief Justice for the period of one year.
- Appealing Courts: There is an Appealing Court in every province which is composed of the below Dewans:
- General Criminal Dewan
- Public Security Dewan
- Civil and Family Dewan
- Public Rights Dewan
- Commercial Dewan
- Juveniles Dewan
- Primary Courts: Includes all city primary courts at the center of provinces and district courts in the center of districts.
- Special Courts: The Supreme Court has the authority to form special courts/tribunals with the approval of the President. For instance: Counter-Narcotics Courts,
- Documents and Deeds Registration Directorates (DDRD): At the center of every province, there is a branch of Documents and Deeds Registration Directorates which deals with properties documents and deeds. This affair is carried out but the primary court at the district level.