What is Martial Law?

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Martial law refers to a situation wherein governments or leaders of a country are forced to take over a certain territory or an entire nation by means of military power or rule. The imposition or implementation of martial law is typically done during an emergency situation which could be temporary or may even be long-term.  Under martial law, military forces are mobilized to territories that may need support in terms of military presence, safety, or protection.

In the event of war with other countries or nations, or tribes for example, one government may put their own country or a certain territory as under martial law.  The main presence and rule of the military is desired in this case to fight back at the enemies who might be trying to invade the territory or the whole country.  Military rule is also necessary to give protection to the citizens and resources of a particular country.  While the war is ongoing, some civil rights may not be honored or practiced because of martial law or military rule.  People may not be able to go out on the streets or go to work during a war not only because martial law is declared but also because of safety reasons.

Aside from wars, internal conflicts or citizen uprising may also force governments to declare martial law.  In this situation, various citizens may become unruly because of their hatred against a particular rule of law or the government itself.  Before a seemingly democratic rally against the government can balloon into a massive uprising, some governments may declare a martial law and prohibit people from doing rallies and protests in order to protect the interests of the other citizens and the whole country in general.  By enforcing military rule, stability and order may be restored in a particular territory.  Once order is restored, martial law may be lifted as deemed appropriate by the leaders or rulers of a country.

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