In a significant development in the Kulbhushan Yadav case, the International Court of Justice (ICJ) has told the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) that Pakistan violated the Vienna Convention by not granting consular access to India in the case.
Presenting his report to the UN General Assembly on Wednesday, ICJ president Judge Abduylqawi Yusuf said that the world court had concluded in its judgment that Pakistan violated its obligations under Article 36 of the Vienna Convention by wrongly stating that its provisions were not applicable to prisoners suspected of espionage.
ICJ was asked to define the meaning of the term “without delay” in respect to the Vienna Convention. Yusuf said that as Pakistan took about 3 weeks to notify the arrest of Kulbhushan Yadav, it breached the provision of the convention under which it was required to inform India’s consular office “without delay”.
ICJ said that the appropriate remedy, in this case, was effective review and reconsideration of the conviction and sentencing of Yadav by Pakistan’s military court.
ICJ also refuted the claims of Pakistan the arrests made under espionage charges are not subject to Vienna Convention. Yusuf said that Article 36 of the convention does not exclude persons suspected of espionage. Therefore, the provision fully applies to the case, he asserted in front of the UNGA.
On 17th July, in a major victory for India, the ICJ had ruled that Pakistan violated Vienna Convention in the Kulbhushan Yadav case, and had ordered review of the case. The international court also had ordered Pakistan to grant consular access to India.
Jadhav is an Indian national and a retired Navy officer, who was arbitrarily arrested by Pakistan in 2016 for being an ‘Indian spy’. A Pakistani military court sentenced him to death in April 2017 on charges of espionage and terrorism.