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Pakistan will grant consular access to Indian spy Jadhav: FO

Updated July 19, 2019

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Jadhav — a serving commander of the Indian Navy associated with Indian spy agency Research and Analysis Wing — was arrested on March 3, 2016, from Balochistan on allegations of espionage and terrorism. — DawnNewsTV/File
Jadhav — a serving commander of the Indian Navy associated with Indian spy agency Research and Analysis Wing — was arrested on March 3, 2016, from Balochistan on allegations of espionage and terrorism. — DawnNewsTV/File

The Foreign Office (FO) on Thursday announced that Pakistan will grant consular access to Indian spy Kulbushan Jadhav.

"As a responsible state, Pakistan will grant consular access to Commander Kulbushan Jadhav according to Pakistani laws, for which modalities are being worked out," a press release issued by the FO read.

Timeline: How the Kulbhushan Jadhav saga unfolded

According to the statement, the decision was made in pursuant to the verdict of the International Court of Justice (ICJ).

"Commander Kulbushan Jadhav has been informed of his rights under Article 36, paragraph 1(b) of the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations," the FO added.

In its verdict, the ICJ had ruled that Jadhav be allowed consular access immediately and asked Pakistan to ensure “effective review and reconsideration of his conviction and sentences”.

The ICJ, however, had rejected all other remedies sought by India, which included the annulment of the military court decision convicting Jadhav, restricting Pakistan from executing the sentence, securing Jadhav's release and ordering his return to India.

In a post shared on Twitter earlier in the day, Prime Minister Imran Khan had said: "Appreciate ICJ’s decision not to acquit, release & return Commander Kulbhushan Jadhav to India."

"He is guilty of crimes against the people of Pakistan. Pakistan shall proceed further as per law," the premier had added.

Case background

Jadhav — a serving commander of the Indian Navy associated with Indian spy agency Research and Analysis Wing — was arrested on March 3, 2016, from Balochistan on allegations of espionage and terrorism.

In his subsequent trial at a military court, Jadhav had confessed to his involvement in terrorist plots.

The spy was subsequently sentenced to death in 2017. However, India insisted that Jadhav was not a spy and said he was kidnapped from Iran.

On April 10, 2017, Army Chief Gen Qamar Bajwa had endorsed the death penalty for Jadhav. In June 2017, the Indian spy had filed a mercy petition against the death penalty, in which he again confessed to his involvement in terrorist activities.

However, before Pakistani authorities could make a final decision, the International Court of Justice (ICJ), after being approached by India, had ordered a stay in his execution through an interim order.