Wed, 19 Sep 2018

ISLAMABAD - Pakistan says it has decided to allow a convicted Indian death row prisoner to meet his wife 'on purely humanitarian grounds.'

Former Indian naval officer Kulbhushan Jadhav was arrested in March 2016 in Pakistan's southwestern province of Baluchistan.

A military court later tried and sentenced him to death, ruling 'the serving commander of the Indian navy' was found guilty of espionage and terrorism against Pakistan.

On Friday, the foreign ministry offered to arrange Jadhav's meeting with his wife, saying India's diplomatic mission in Islamabad has been formally informed about the decision.

New Delhi admits Jadhav is a former officer of the Indian navy but rejects the charges against him as baseless, saying Jadhav has no connection with the government.

Friends of Indian naval officer Kulbhushan Jadhav celebrate the International Court of Justice order on Jadhav with sweets in Mumbai, India, May 18, 2017. The U.N. court ordered Pakistan not to execute the Indian naval officer convicted of espionage and terrorism.

India alleges Jadhav was kidnapped and brought to Baluchistan from neighboring Iran.

The Pakistan foreign ministry reiterated Friday that Jadhav has 'confessed before ... the [military] court that he was tasked by RAW [Indian spy agency] to plan, coordinate and organize espionage, terrorist and sabotage activities aimed at destabilizing and waging war against Pakistan.'

India asked the International Court of Justice (ICJ) in May to restrict Pakistan from executing Jadhav, arguing he was denied diplomatic assistance during the 'unfair trial.'

The ICJ suspended the execution, pending final judgment by the court.

Jadhav has filed an appeal with Pakistan's military chief, General Qamar Javed Bajwa, to seek clemency, which is still pending.

Relations between India and Pakistan have deteriorated and a bilateral peace dialogue also remains suspended.

In a transcript of his confession, which was released by Pakistan's military, Jadhav said a major goal he was assigned by the Indian intelligence agency was to disrupt a multibillion-dollar infrastructure project in Pakistan being funded by China.

More Southeast Asia News

Access More

Sign up for Southeast Asia News

a daily newsletter full of things to discuss over drinks.and the great thing is that it's on the house!