Published: Sat, May 20, 2017
World | By Paul Elliott

Pakistan to change legal team fighting Jadhav's case at ICJ

Pakistan to change legal team fighting Jadhav's case at ICJ

A Pakistani military court sentenced him to death in April.

Jadhav reportedly joined India's prestigious National Defence Academy in 1987 and was commissioned as an engineer in the Indian Navy in 1991.

In an emergency hearing on Monday, India had accused Pakistan of "egregious violations of the Vienna convention" by denying Mr Jadhav, a former navy officer, of legal counsel and consular access and refusing to reveal the charges or evidence against him.

India and Pakistan routinely accuse one another of sending spies into their countries, and it is not uncommon for either nation to expel diplomats accused of espionage, particularly at times of high tension.

Shaiq Usmani, a retired judge of Pakistan's Supreme Court, told the media that Jadhav's case will go on in Pakistan until the ICJ gives it final decision.

The decision has been termed as a diplomatic win for India.

The International Court of Justice (ICJ) holds a public hearing on March 6, 2017 in The Hague.

India has argued that Jadhav was wrongly convicted for spying.

The fee amount was confirmed by Sushma Swaraj.

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Reacting to the order of the International Court of Justice (ICJ) in the Kulbhushan Jadhav case on Thursday, Pakistan said it will not accept the United Nations court's jurisdiction in matters related to national security.

The court has asked Pakistan to give consular access to Jadhav, who was arrested in March a year ago in the country's southern province, a few kilometers (miles) from the Iranian border.

Sharma also slammed Pakistan over remarks of its Foreign Office spokesperson Nafees Zakaria that ICJ has no jurisdiction to hear the case concerning Jadhav. That is, the ICJ agreed that it is possible Jadhav may be hanged before its verdict. It said Pakistan's alleged failure to provide consular access to Jadhav appeared to be falling within the scope of the Vienna Convention. "The Court further observes that the existence of a 2008 bilateral agreement between the parties on consular relations does not change its conclusion on jurisdiction", it said.

For Pakistan to follow suit and execute Mr Jadhav despite the court's order would "draw worldwide censure", said ICJ president Ronny Abraham.

The order comes ten days after India approached the UN's top court for "provisional measure" of protection - an interim relief - in the Jadhav case.

"In our submissions on 15 May, we had assured the court unambiguously that Commander Jadhav would be provided every opportunity and remedy available under the law to defend his case", a statement said.

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