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Pakistan to grant consular access to Kulbhushan Jadhav today

By Vishal S
|

New Delhi, Sep 01: Pakistan on Sunday announced that it would grant consular access to former Indian Navy officer Kulbhushan Jadhav, who was arrested in March 2016 by Pakistani authorities on "espionage and terrorism" charges, on Monday (September 2).

On July 17, the International Court of Justice (ICJ) ruled in India's favour in Jadhav's case and affirmed that the right to consular access should be granted to the former Indian Navy officer.

Jadhav

Foreign Office Spokesman Mohammad Faisal said Jadhav is being provided the consular access "in line with Vienna Convention on Consular relations, ICJ judgement and the laws of Pakistan".

"Consular access to Kulbhushan Jadhav will be provided tomorrow, in line with Vienna Convention on Consular relations, International Court of Justice (ICJ) judgement & the laws of Pakistan," ANI quoted Pakistan Ministry of Foreign Affairs as saying.

The retired Indian Navy officer is on death row in Pakistan which has accused him of spying.

On the death sentence awarded to the ex-navy officer in 2017 by a Pakistani military court, the ICJ in July said Jadhav's death sentence should remain suspended until Islamabad effectively reviews and reconsiders the decision.

India maintains that Jadhav was kidnapped from Iran where he had business interests after retiring from the Navy and has been wrongly framed.

[How Kulbhushan Jadhav was abducted in Iran and sold to ISI]

The verdict in the high-profile case came nearly five months after a 15-member bench of ICJ led by Judge Yusuf had reserved its decision on February 21 after hearing oral submissions by India and Pakistan. The proceedings of the case took two years and two months to complete.

India had in July said it is expecting full consular access to be granted to its national Kulbhushan Jadhav by Pakistan.

Jadhav, 49, a retired Indian Navy officer, was sentenced to death by a Pakistani military court on charges of "espionage and terrorism" after a closed trial in April 2017. His sentencing evoked a sharp reaction in India. In a reprieve for Jadhav, a 16-member bench of the International Court of Justice on July 17 by a 15-1 vote continued the stay on the execution and held that Islamabad violated New Delhi's rights to consular visits after his arrest.

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