The International Court of Justice (ICJ) has taken action at India’s request to halt the execution of an ex-naval officer convicted in Pakistan of espionage, officials in New Delhi said Wednesday.
The Hague-based court had asked Pakistan to stay the execution of Kulbhushan Jadhav, 46, who was denied consular access despite several requests, Indian Foreign Ministry spokesman Gopal Baglay said.
Pakistan had denied 16 requests for consular access to Jadhav in contravention to international law, Baglay said during a press conference in New Delhi.
A non-binding letter had been sent to Pakistan requesting authorities not to act until the court had time to review the case, an official in the Hague with knowledge of the proceedings told dpa.
India denies that Jadhav is a spy and filed an appeal with the ICJ to review Pakistan’s death sentence against him.
The Pakistani government was examining India’s ICJ request and would come up with a formal response in the coming days, Pakistan’s top diplomat Sartaj Aziz said Wednesday in an interview broadcast on Geo TV.
A Pakistani army court sentenced Jadhav to the gallows in April for spying and fomenting unrest in the province of Balochistan.
Jadhav’s sentencing has escalated tensions between the nuclear-armed neighbours, with Delhi slamming Islamabad for carrying out a “farcical” trial.
Pakistan and India, nuclear-armed South Asian neighbours, have captured and convicted each other’s citizens for espionage, but none of the alleged spies have ever been executed.
Those captured are often return to their countries in cold war-st
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