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It asked Pakistan to inform the court of measures taken to implement the order staying the execution of Kulbhushan Jadhav.

The International Court of Justice on Thursday asked Pakistan to ensure that Indian citizen Kulbhushan Jadhav is not hanged until further orders and stayed his execution. The court asked Pakistan to give India consular access to Jadhav on Thursday, which in itself was a violation of the Vienna Convention, the court said.

ICJ President Ronny Abraham, who read out the judgement of the bench comprising 11 judges, had harsh words for Pakistan. The judge said Pakistan had violated Article 36 of the Vienna Convention by not giving consular access to Jadhav. He rejected Pakistan’s contention that the court had no jurisdiction on the Jadhav death sentence. “The court considers it has prime facia jurisdiction in the case,” he said.

The court provided India provisional rights to safeguard his life.  It asked Pakistan to inform the court of measures taken to implement this order.

The court observed that Pakistan has indicated that any execution of Jadhav would probably not take place before the month of August 2017. “This means that there is a risk that an execution could take place at any moment thereafter, before the Court has given its final decision in the case. The Court also notes that Pakistan has given no assurance that Jadhav will not be executed before the Court has rendered its final decision. In those circumstances, the Court is satisfied that there is urgency in the present case,” an ICJ press release on the case said.

The court was composed as follows: President Abraham of France; Judges Hisashi Owada of Japan, Antônio Augusto Cançado Trindade of Brazil, Xue Hanqin of China, Joan Donoghue of the US, Giorgio Gaja of Italy, Julia Sebutinde of Uganda, Dalveer Bhandari of India, Patrick Lipton Robinson of Jamaica, James Crawford of Australia, Kirill Gevorgian of Russia and Registrar Philippe Couvreur.

Judge Cançado Trindade appended a separate opinion to the Order of the Court while Judge Bhandari made a declaration to the Order of the Court, the press release said.

Before the court in The Hague, India had argued that Jadhav was tried for espionage and given the death sentence in Pakistan, violating the Vienna Convention. Pakistan claimed that Jadhav, a former Indian Navy officer, was working for the Research and Analysis Wing (RAW) when he was arrested from Balochistan in March 2016.

Upon India’s moving the international forum, Abraham wrote to Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to not execute Jadhav until the court heard the matter. The public hearing was held on May 15 at The Hague, Netherlands.

India moved the ICJ on May 8, charging Pakistan with “egregious violations of the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations” in the matter of the detention and trial of Kulbhushan Jadhav. This was the first time in 18 years that India and Pakistan arrived at ICJ doorsteps.

Responding to Pakistani claims of Jadhav being a RAW agent, India said that he was a former Indian Navy officer-turned-businessman. Jadhav was kidnapped from Iran during a business trip and was then taken to Balochistan, New Delhi claimed.

Pakistan has consistently refused consular access to Jadhav, sought by India, on the grounds that he was tried for espionage and Islamabad was under no compulsion to entertain the Indian request.

India was represented at the ICJ by senior advocate Harish Salve while the Pakistan case was argued for by Khawar Qureshi.

The trial has been an emotional issue for social media in India and Pakistan. Both sides had seen vitriolic debates and jingoism in popular media over the case.

Pakistan had hanged another Indian, Sarabjit Singh, on May 2, 2013.

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