Web Desk (24 News) — The World Court ordered Pakistan on Thursday not to execute an Indian citizen convicted of spying until it hears a case brought by India arguing that Islamabad violated a treaty guaranteeing diplomatic assistance to foreigners accused of crimes, said a report.
The court, formally known as the International Court of Justice (ICJ), is the top United Nations legal body for hearing disputes between states and its rulings are binding – though occasionally flouted.
The dispute revolves around the fate of Kulbhushan Sudhir Jadhav, a former officer in the Indian navy who was arrested in March 2016 in the Pakistani province of Baluchistan. There has been a long-running conflict in Baluchistan between Pakistani security forces and a militant separatist movement.
“It is appropriate for the court to order that Pakistan take all measures at its disposal to ensure Mr Jadhav is not executed before this (11-member) court has given its final decision,” presiding Judge Ronny Abraham said. The decision was unanimous.
Pakistani authorities say Jadhav confessed to being assigned by India’s intelligence service to plan, coordinate and organize espionage and sabotage activities in Baluchistan “aiming to destabilize and wage war against Pakistan”.
In April, a Pakistani military court sentenced him to death .
India asked the ICJ for the injunction barring its fellow nuclear-armed neighbor from executing Jadhav, arguing that he was denied diplomatic assistance in violation of the Vienna Treaty on Consular Relations at what it terms an unfair trial.
Pakistan maintained that the ICJ need not intervene as it had adhered to a 2008 bilateral treaty with India that supersedes the Vienna pact by stating that the right to consular access can be waived where “national security” is at risk.