The International Court of Justice has ordered Pakistan to halt the execution of a former Indian naval officer pending a final decision in the proceedings.
India took Pakistan to the court over the death sentence handed down to Kulbhushan Jadhav for alleged espionage and sabotage activities, in a case that has raised tensions between the nuclear-armed South Asian neighbors. Both India and Pakistan are signatories to the ICJ.
The unanimous order from the ICJ, the principal judicial organ of the United Nations, was read out by Judge Ronny Abraham. “Pakistan shall take all measures at its disposal to ensure that Mr. Jadhav is not executed pending the final decision in these proceedings and shall inform the Court of all the measures taken in implementation of the present order,” the court ruled, according a statement.
It found that accusations of espionage did not void India’s claim to consular access under the Vienna Convention. The judge also stated that the severity of a death sentence provided necessary urgency for the court to implement provisional measures.
India’s government expressed relief over the ruling.