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Kulbhushan Jadhav case: Pakistan to file counter-memorial on July 17




Islamanbad:Pakistan will be filing its second counter-memorial in the International Court of Justice on the conviction of alleged Indian spy Kulbhushan Jadhav on July 17, an official said on Thursday.

On January 23, the International Court of Justice (ICJ) gave a timeline to both Pakistan and India for filing another round of memorials in the case. The counter-memorial is a written pleading in a contentious case before the ICJ.

“Our team has prepared a comprehensive reply to Indian rejoinder, which will be filed on July 17,” Foreign Office spokesman Muhammad Faisal said in a press briefing here.

Pakistan’s top attorney Khawar Qureshi had briefed Prime Minister Nasirul Mulk about the memorial last week during a meeting that was also attended by Attorney General Khalid Javed Khan and other senior officials.

Faisal said that Pakistan on December 13 last year had filed its counter-memorial before the ICJ, a world court in The Hague which is looking into the Indian complaint on the conviction Jadhav.

India had on April 17 submitted its second memorial in the court.

According to the report after the submission of the second counter-memorial, which will be filed on July 17, the ICJ will fix the matter for hearing, which is likely to take place next year.

He said the hearing of the case would start after the completion of submissions by both New Delhi and Islamabad.

However, a senior lawyer, who has expertise in international litigation, told the Express News that there was no chance of hearing the case in the on-going year. Even the hearing of other matters has already been fixed until March/April next year, therefore, the Kulbhushan Jadhav case will be listed in summer next year, he added.

On September 13 last year, India submitted a 22-page memorandum wherein it objected to Jadhav being tried by a military court in Pakistan. India had contended that Jadhav’s trial should have been conducted by a civilian court and that Pakistan was bound to give him consular access.

The ICJ on May 18 last year halted the execution of Jadhav, who was sentenced to death by a military court on April 10 after being convicted on charges of terrorism and espionage.

Jadhav was allegedly apprehended on March 3, 2016, after he illegally crossed into Pakistan via the Iran border.


Opposition Conservative Party calls for criminal probe into Trudeau’s ties to charity

The call came a day after media reported that WE Charity had financial dealings with Trudeau’s family members.



Justin Trudeau

Ottawa, July 11 : Canada’s opposition Conservative Party has called for a criminal investigation into Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s decision to hand almost a billion-dollar program to a charity, which reportedly paid his family a large amount of money to speak at the group’s events.

“Not only did Justin Trudeau not recuse himself from the decision to hand almost a billion dollars to WE Charity, we know now that the organization paid his family almost C$300,000. It is clear that a criminal investigation is warranted. As such, Conservatives will be writing to the RCMP (Royal Canadian Mounted Police) to encourage them pursue this case,” the opposition said in a statement on Friday.

The Conservative Party also alleged that Trudeau violated the Conflict of Interest Act that “prohibits public office holders from making any decision or participating in the making of a decision that furthers their private interests or improperly furthers the private interests of another person”, reports Xinhua news agency.

The call came a day after media reported that WE Charity had financial dealings with Trudeau’s family members.

Trudeau”s mother and brother have reportedly been paid a total of C$282,000 to appear at WE Charity events, according to Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC).

CTV reported that Trudeau”s wife received C$1,400 for participating in a WE Charity event in 2012, before the Prime Minister became leader of the ruling Liberal Party.

She currently hosts a podcast for the charity group.

Trudeau and his government have been under fire since the charity was announced as the manager of the Canada Student Service Grant program.

Canadian Conflict of Interest and Ethics Commissioner Mario Dion announced last week that he was investigating into a possible breach of federal conflict of interest act by Trudeau after his government”s decision to award the WE Charity the contract to administer a summer student grant program of C$900 million.

In a statement on Friday, New Democratic Party leader Jagmeet Singh said that the hundreds of thousands of dollars in payments to the trio of Trudeau”s family members were “more than disturbing”, and illustrate a “pattern of behaviour”.

Meanwhile, Bloc Quebecois leader Yves-Francois Blanchet called on the Prime Minister to “step aside” until the completion of the ethics commissioner investigation.

WE Charity announced last week that it was pulling out of administering the program.

Some 35,000 students and recent graduates have applied for the program, which connects them with volunteering opportunities in exchange for payments of between C$1,000 and C$5,000, depending on the number of hours worked.

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Trump downplays chances of new China trade deal

In January, Trump had signed the phase one trade deal with China that focused on increasing US exports of agricultural, energy and other products.





Washington, July 11 : US President Donald Trump has downplayed chances of a new China trade deal as he slammed the Asian giants handling of the coronavirus pandemic, the media reported.

Addressing reporters aboard Air Force One on Friday, the President said that the US” relationship with China has been “severely damaged”, adding that he has “other things in mind” than a second trade agreement, known as phase two, Politico news reported.

“They could have stopped the plague, they could have stopped it, they didn”t stop it,” he said, referring to the pandemic, which had first emerged in China”s Wuhan city last December.

“They stopped it from going into the remaining portions of China from Wuhan… They could have stopped the plague, they didn”t,” the President was quoted as saying in the Politico news report.

In January, Trump had signed the phase one trade deal with China that focused on increasing US exports of agricultural, energy and other products.

This is not the first time Trump has slammed China over the pandemic.

In recent weeks, Trump has described COVID-19 “kung flu” and the “Chinese virus”.

Top administration officials like Secretary of State Mike Pompeo have called it the “Wuhan virus”.

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Pressure mounts on Priti Patel to grant asylum to Sudanese girl




London, July 11 : UK Home Secretary Priti Patel has been urged by former judges and politicians to grant asylum to an 11-year-old Sudanese girl who would be at high risk of female genital mutilation (FGM) if taken abroad.

Around 300 people including politicians, judges and activists have signed an open letter to Patel.

The case of the Sudanese girl, Jasmine, gathered enormous support since it was reported by the The Guardian newspaper last week that she remained at risk of deportation to Sudan via Bahrain despite being the subject of an FGM protection order.

Labour MP Helena Kennedy, former chief prosecutor Nazir Afzal and more than 30 MPs have added their names to the letter published by the the Good Law Project, a not-for-profit membership organisation.

The letter is spearheaded by activist Hooda Ali who herself is a victim of FGM and has witnessed life-changing consequences after being cut aged seven.

Ali said: “Jasmine will be aware of FGM because her mother has been cut, her aunties died after being cut. She will have been taught in school that her body belongs to her… But at home she hears of risk of FGM, that is incredibly confusing and scary.”

Patel mounted a legal challenge around the case, which was dismissed at a hearing last month in the court of appeal.

Kennedy said: “This case has been fought hard by the Home Office because it lives in terror that if it becomes too easy to flee FGM and get asylum, the UK will be flooded with applicants. But every case should be decided on its own merit. It is very important our courts take a tough position on Female Genital Mutilation, which is a form of torture.”

Jasmine was brought to the UK at the age of three by her mother, who is also a victim of FGM and whose two sisters died after being cut in their native Sudan.

The single mother”s claim for asylum failed but inquiries by the family court into her daughter”s welfare led a judge to conclude: “It is difficult to think of a clearer or more serious case where the risk of FGM is so high.”

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