Pakistan must ensure Kulbhushan Jadhav is not executed: International Court of Justice


"The ICJ, the principal judicial organ of the United Nations, will deliver its Order on the request for the indication of provisional measures made by India in the Jadhav Case (India v. Pakistan), tomorrow on Thursday 18 May 2017".

India demanded immediate suspension of Jadhav's death sentence but Pakistan presented the Kulbhushan Jadhav case as a matter of national security and the ICJ's decision would not apply to "matters related to the national security of Pakistan".

Foreign Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj took to Twitter and said, "The ICJ order has come as a great relief to the family of Kulbhushan Jadhav and people of India".

The officer, Kulbhushan Jadhav, was convicted in Pakistan and sentenced to death on April 10.

During Kulbhushan case India has expressed that Pakistan violated the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations by not providing New Delhi access to Jadhav. Islamabad has rejected 16 Indian requests for consular access to Jadhav, who is being held at an unknown prison in Pakistan. The president of the court, Ronny Abraham, pronounced the decision. Apparently, Pakistan has informed ICJ that Jadhav's associates are still indulging in terrorist activities in Pakistan.

ICJ on consular notification and accessThe Court then turns to the question whether the rights alleged by India are at least plausible.

"As far as Pakistan is concerned, the court's decision today has not changed the status of commander Jadhav's case in any manner". The ICJ also ordered Pakistani authorities to inform it of all measures taken to execute its judgment. The ICJ ruled that its jurisdiction lay only in establishing whether the U.S. breached its obligations as listed under Article 36, paragraph 1, of the Vienna Convention and not functioning as "a court of criminal appeal".

Pakistan's counsel Khawer Qureshi said while India had said Jadhav was an Indian national, New Delhi had not presented Pakistan with any evidentiary proof that he was Indian.

They requested the court to ensure that the USA should not execute or set execution dates for any Mexican national before the court passed judgment.

Harish Salve (left) who represented Jadhav and India's case at the ICJ.

The tribunal directed Islamabad to suspend the sentence until it has had time to hear an argument from India that Pakistan violated an global treaty guaranteeing diplomatic help to foreigners accused of capital crimes. USA authorities ignored a similar ICJ injunction in 1999 and executed a German national. The matter is sub judice while it is in front of the court, Judge Abraham said, and so Pakistan can not execute Jadhav in the meanwhile.