Thursday Jul 16, 2020
ISLAMABAD: Foreign minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi on Thursday said India's ill-intentions were revealed when Pakistan provided New Delhi's diplomats uninterrupted consular access to RAW spy Kulbhushan Jadhav for a second time today at the country's own request, but they left without meeting him in Islamabad.
"Two Indian diplomats were given consular access to Kulbhushan today, according to what was agreed upon. [However], India's ill-intentions have been unmasked. They did not want consular access," Qureshi said, in a conversation with Geo News.
The foreign minister said that Jadhav kept calling out to the Indian diplomats but they left. "He kept calling out to them, saying he wanted to meet them, but they left saying the environment was unsuitable."
"The Indian diplomats' behaviour was surprising. Why did the diplomats ask for consular access when they did not even want to talk to Kulbhushan?"
Qureshi underlined that last year, when consular access was provided the first time, the diplomats had objected to a glass wall in the middle, as well as the audio- and video-recording of the meeting.
"All of the diplomats' wishes were fulfiled today but they left nonetheless," he said, adding that they made excuses "the space is constrained and the environment not suitable".
According to a Foreign Office statement released after the meeting, Pakistan had provided India unimpeded and uninterrupted consular access to Jadhav for a second time at India's request.
"Two consular officers of the Indian High Commission in Islamabad were provided unimpeded and uninterrupted consular access to Commander Jadhav at 1500 hours", according to the statement.
An offer was first made in August, last year, but it was rejected by India as it sought unimpeded access to him. Subsequently, on September 2, 2019, the first consular access under the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations (VCCR) 1963 was provided.
Jadhav's mother and wife were allowed to meet him on December 25, 2017.
"Pakistan remains committed to fully implementing the International Court of Justice (ICJ)’s judgment of 17 July 2019," said the FO, also hoping that India will cooperate with Pakistan to see that the judgment is given "full effect".
Last week, FO Director-General South Asia Zahid Hafeez, in a press conference, said that usually consular access is granted once, however Pakistan as a “humanitarian gesture was extending another such offer for the second time”.
This time, he said, the offer was made for Jadhav's meeting with his wife and father.
He also said that Jadhav still has a chance to file a review petition against his sentence and conviction.
A review and reconsideration petition could be filed by Jadhav, his legally-authorised representative or a consular officer of the Indian High Commission at the Islamabad High Court (IHC), Hafeez said, adding that Pakistan had offered to assist in arranging a legal representative for the spy.
He explained that Pakistan had, on May 20, enacted the ICJ Review and Reconciliation Ordinance, under which a review petition may be submitted to the IHC within 60 days of the legislation coming into effect.
The 60-day time limit ends on July 19.
Jadhav had been offered the chance on June 17, 2020, but he had refused to avail it.
According to the Foreign Office, Jadhav is a serving commander of Indian Navy associated with Indian spy agency Research and Analysis Wing (RAW).
The spy was arrested on March 3, 2016, from Balochistan on allegations of espionage and terrorism.
According to the FO statement, he had confessed during investigation to "to his involvement in terrorist activities inside Pakistan that resulted in loss of many precious human lives".
"He also made important revelations about RAW’s role in sponsoring state terrorism in Pakistan," the statement added.
Jadhav was given a death sentence by a Pakistan military court on April 10, 2017.