ICJ President presents UNGA


Nov,7: The principal judicial organ of the United Nations, International Court of Justice (ICJ) President Judge Abdulqawi Yusuf conveyed to the UN General Assembly (UNGA) on Pakistan’s continued violation of its obligations under the Vienna Convention in the case of Kulbhushan Jadhav, an alleged Indian spy by the Pak Government. While presenting ICJ’s report to the 193-member General Assembly on Oct 30, 2019, Judge Yusuf mentioned its judgment of July 17, 2019, in which the court had found that Pakistan had violated its obligations under Article 36 of the Vienna Convention and that appropriate remedies were due to Jadhav in the case presented by India.

After the judgement was pronounced, India lamented Pakistan on latter’s eye-wash to the world community on providing consular access to Jadhav in the presence of Pakistani officials and CCTV cameras, which, negated the spirit of the judgment. Even though, Indian government continued to remain in touch with Pakistan diplomatically to have another round of access of Jadhav under Vienna Convention of consular access.

In his detailed presentation to UNGA members, Judge Yusuf elaborated on several aspects of the court’s ruling, including an issue that came for examination, was the question of whether the rights relating to consular access, set out in Article 36 of the Vienna Convention, were in any manner to be excluded in a situation where the individual concerned was suspected of carrying out acts of espionage. He explained that the ICJ noted during this hearings that there was no provision in the Vienna Convention containing a reference to cases of espionage, nor did the article concerning consular access, Article 36, exclude from its scope of certain categories of persons, such as those suspected of espionage. Therefore, the court concluded that Article 36 was applicable in full to the case at hand.

The ICJ had also earlier ruled that Pakistan must review the death sentence awarded to Jadhav, a retired Indian Navy officer who was sentenced to death by a Pakistani military court on charges of “espionage and terrorism” after a closed trial in April 2017.