Pakistan has formally approached the Indian government with an offer to grant consular access to Kulbhushan Jadhav, the Indian spy sentenced by Pakistan on charges of espionage and terrorism, the Foreign Office said on Thursday.

Speaking at his weekly press briefing, FO spokesperson Dr Mohammad Faisal said work was being done on granting consular access to Jadhav and that measures in this regard were being taken in accordance with last month's decision of the International Court of Justice (ICJ).

He said India was informed that Jadhav could be granted consular access on August 2 (tomorrow).

Editorial: Now that ICJ has ruled on Jadhav, Islamabad and Delhi must move forward with maturity

Speaking in New Delhi, Indian foreign ministry spokesman Raveesh Kumar confirmed that they had received a proposal from Pakistan.

"We have received a proposal from Pakistan. We are evaluating the proposal in the light of [the] ICJ judgement," The Economic Times quoted him as saying.

Kumair said India will "maintain communication with Pakistan in this matter through diplomatic channels".

The Hague-based ICJ on July 17 had rejected India’s request for acquittal, release and return of Commander Jadhav. However, the world court asked Pakistan to provide consular access to him under the Vienna Convention.

Following the verdict, the FO had announced that as a responsible state Pakistan would grant consular access to Jadhav according to the country’s laws, for which modalities were being worked out.

It said that pursuant to the ICJ judgement, Jadhav had been informed of his rights under Article 36, Paragraph 1(b) of the Vienna Conven­tion on Consular Relations.

In its verdict that followed proceedings lasting about two years, the UN’s top court did not accept India’s contention that Jadhav was entitled to ‘restitutio in integrum’ (restoration to original position) and turned down its request to annul the decision of a military court.

Instead, it ruled that Pakistan by means of its own choosing could undergo an effective review and reconsideration of the sentence awarded to Jadhav.

Jadhav was arrested on March 3, 2016, in a counter-intelligence operation in Balochistan. A military court awarded him death sentence on April 10, 2017, following his confession that he had mounted operations for India’s Research and Analysis Wing to conduct terrorist activities on Pakistani soil.

Afghan Taliban's visit

The FO spokesperson during the briefing said that Pakistan has been playing the role of a facilitator in the United States' talks with the Afghan Taliban in good faith. He added that Pakistan's positive role in the Afghan reconciliation process was lauded by the international community.

He said matters were being finalised in connection with the visit of an Afghan Taliban delegation to Pakistan and their meeting with Prime Minister Imran Khan.

In response to a question, Dr Faisal said that US President Donald Trump has agreed to visit Pakistan in reply to an invitation extended to him by Prime Minister Imran.

"The details of the visit would be worked out in due course," he said, declining to provide a likely date for the visit.



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