ICJ to announce verdict in Kulbhushan Jadhav’s case today

Kulbhushan Jadhav
File Photo

The International Court of Justice will deliver on Wednesday its verdict on Indian national Kulbhushan Jadhav, sentenced to death for alleged espionage by a Pakistani military court.

A public sitting will take place at 3 p.m. at the Peace Palace in The Hague, during which Judge Abdulqawi Ahmed Yusuf, President of the Court, will read the Court’s decision.”

Pakistan’s military courts had charged Jadhav with terrorism and espionage in 2017. He was sentenced to death in April that year, which was endorsed by Chief of Army Staff Qamar Bajwa. But Jadhav’s execution was stayed after India approached the ICJ for mediation.

Pakistan says it arrested Jadhav in Balochistan province in 2016. However, India says he was kidnapped from Iran, where he was running a business.

The ICJ asked Pakistan to hold off the execution till it reaches its final verdict in the case.

In December 2017, Jadhav’s mother and wife travelled to meet him, but their interaction was across a glass barrier and through a telephone. Jadhav’s responses during the interaction also came across as stilted and tutored.

India has accused Islamabad of violating the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations by not allowing consular access to Jadhav.

India has sought annulment of Jadhav’s death sentence and his immediate release, saying the verdict failed to satisfy even the minimum standards of due process.

In February this year, the world court held a four-day public hearing during which both India and Pakistan submitted their detailed pleas and responses.

India based its case on two broad issues — breach of Vienna Convention on consular access and the process of resolution.

India has urged the ICJ to annul Jadhav’s death sentence, saying the verdict by a Pakistani military court was based on a “farcical case” and failed to satisfy even the minimum standards of due process.

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