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Pakistan violated Vienna Convention in Kulbushan Jadhav case: ICJ tells UNGA

New Delhi: Pakistan violated its obligation under the Vienna Convention in the Kulbhushan Jadhav case, International Court of Justice (ICJ) President Judge Abduylqawi Yusuf told the United Nations General Assembly on Wednesday.

Presenting his report to the ICJ, Yusuf said that the “Court has found that Pakistan had violated its obligations under Article 36 of the Vienna Convention and that appropriate remedies were due in this case.”

“I now turn to the judgment rendered by the Court on the merits in the Jadhav (India v Pakistan) case on 17 July 2019. This case was instituted by India following the arrest and detention of an Indian national, Mr Kulbhushan Sudhir Jadhav, who was accused by Pakistan of acts of espionage. In April 2017, Mr Jadhav was sentenced to death by a military court in Pakistan. India argued that consular access was being denied to its national in violation of the 1963 Vienna Convention on Consular Relations (which I will refer to simply as the ‘Vienna Convention’),” the judge said in its opening statement after which he added that Pakistan violated its obligation.

Yusuf also sought for an “effective review and reconsideration of the conviction and sentence of Jadhav.” He also laid stress on several other factors in connection with the case.

Yusuf said that “Pakistan must ensure full weight is given to the effect of the violation of the rights set forth in the Vienna Convention and guarantee that the violation and possible prejudice caused by the violation are fully examined.”

The Court also called upon to interpret the meaning of the expression “without delay” in the notification requirements of Article 36 of the Vienna Convention.

Coming to the “crux” of the ruling, Yusuf said that the Court considered the reparation and remedies to be granted, after it had found that the rights to consular access had been violated.

Yusuf, meanwhile, also added that following its ruling, the ICJ received a communication from Pakistan on August 1, confirming its commitment to implementing the Judgment of July 17 in full.

“In particular, Pakistan stated that Mr Jadhav had been immediately informed of his rights under the Vienna Convention and that the consular post of the High Commission of India in Islamabad had been invited to visit him on August 2, 2019,” he said.

Jadhav, a retired Indian Navy commander, was tried by a Pakistani military court and sentenced to death in April 2017 on charges of spying and supporting terrorism. India says that he was kidnapped from Iran and brought to Pakistan.

Earlier in 2019, in a major diplomatic victory for India, the ICJ had ruled that Pakistan must review Jadhav’s death sentence.