Pakistan says no second consular access to Kulbhushan

India says ICJ verdict should

Kulbhushan Jadhav.

Even as Pakistan on Thursday ruled out the possibility of allowing a diplomat of India to meet former Indian Navy officer Kulbhushan Jadhav again, New Delhi vowed to keep asking the neighbouring country's government for full implementation of the July 17 judgement of the International Court of Justice (ICJ).

“We have heard their statement. We will still try for full implementation of the ICJ verdict,” Raveesh Kumar, the spokesperson of the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA), told journalists in New Delhi.

He was reacting to a comment by his counterpart in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Pakistan government, Mohammad Faisal, denying the possibility of a diplomat or a consular official of the High Commission of India in Islamabad meeting Jadhav.

Jadhav, who has been in the custody of Pakistan Army at least since March 3, 2016, is currently on the death row as a military court in the neighbouring country awarded him capital punishment on April 10, 2017. He was accused and convicted of being involved in espionage and sabotage in Pakistan on behalf of an external intelligence agency of India. The ICJ on July 17 had asked Pakistan to allow consular officials of High Commission of India in Islamabad to meet Jadhav.

“The judgement was in our favour. We have been telling Pakistan consistently that the ICJ judgement should be implemented fully,” Kumar said in New Delhi on Thursday.

Islamabad on September 2 allowed India's Deputy High Commissioner to Pakistan, Gaurav Ahluwalia, to meet the incarcerated former Indian Navy officer.

Ahluwalia, however, found Jadhav “under extreme pressure” to “parrot a false narrative”.

“There is no other meeting planned,” Faisal was quoted by PTI saying in Islamabad in response to a query if the officials of the High Commission of India in Pakistan would be allowed to meet Jadhav again.

The ICJ on July 17 concluded that Islamabad had violated Article 36 of the Vienna Convention of Consular Relations 1963, as it had not informed New Delhi immediately after Pakistan Army had taken him into custody. The court found that Pakistan had also flouted the Vienna Convention by declining India's repeated requests for allowing officials of its High Commission in Islamabad to meet him and arrange lawyers to defend him.

The court also stated that the death sentence awarded to Jadhav by a military court of Pakistan in April 2017 should remain suspended till the review of the conviction. It, however, left it to the Pakistan government to choose the means of reviewing the case and thus rejected New Delhi's argument that Islamabad should be asked to conduct the re-trial in a civilian court of Pakistan.

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