Pakistan

On Thursday the International Court of Justice issued an order staying the execution of Indian spy Kulbushan Jadhav, causing shock and disappointment in Pakistan.

While the verdict has fuelled intense speculations with observers including journalists saying that the Indian lobby in the court had influenced and then leaked the verdict beforehand, politicians have not only rejected the verdict but have also criticised the way the government dealt with the case.

Following are the analysis/opinion of experts and politicians:

“India won the moral case, Pakistan’s case too weak”: Ayesha Siddiqa

In an exclusive chat with Daily Pakistan, author and independent scholar Ayesha Siddiqa expressed the opinion that Pakistan’s case was very weak and had multiple loopholes. Rubbishing the conspiracy theories surrounding the ICJ stay on Kalbushan’s execution, Siddiqa said Pakistan failed to put forward important facts that could potentially strengthen its case.

“It was expected, the outrage is certainly misplaced.”

“It is not that India is always heard on international platforms, it’s because India knocks the doors of International platforms after making its case strong enough.”

She added that it’s only a provisional stay and Pakistanis are “unnecessarily bashing” it. One of the factors that weakens Pakistan’s stand, she argues, is the fact that Pakistan has established military courts which are unjustified by any norm and standard of justice.

“Hang him if you want but doing so after ICJ provisional judgement will give moral victory to India. The case is still to be fought and Pakistan has now the chance of bringing a case of spying against Kulbhshan Yadav in front of the International jurists.”

Defying ICJ’s stay is akin to isolating ourselves and depriving ourselves of options of justice in future.

“Which door will Pakistan knock in the future if it defies the stay?” she added.

Commenting on the arguments from some ‘experts’ that Pakistan should not have gone to the ICJ, Ayesha said, “It’s not a children’s game, had Pakistan not gone to the ICJ, it would have stayed in the memories of people for decades that Pakistan executed a man violating international laws.”

Dubbing the conspiracy theories as rubbish, Siddiqa said Jindal’s visit to Pakistan had nothing to do with the ICJ case. It was most probably part of the back-channel diplomacy and was justified.

“Pakistan should have provided consular access from the start”: Yasser Latif Hamdani

Prominent lawyer, author and columnist, Yasser Latif Hamdani said that the decision is exactly what was expected. He said Pakistan should have provided consular access from the start. “What was the point denying?” he asked, adding “the ICJ was not going to say don’t give consular access. It was to determine jurisdiction prima facie which there was since 2008 agreement can’t override Vienna Convention.”

“They had to see irreparable harm which was there. And urgency which it determined was there because Pakistan failed to reassure the court that it would not hang Jadhav before the hearing is over. Hence this stay order.”

“You mishandled the case”: Sherry Rehman

Senior PPP leader Sherry Rehman said, “We based our case on jurisdiction and it proved weak. More arguments should have been made regarding espionage.”

Talking to Samaa, Ms Sherry Rehman said that Pakistan did not utilize the option available to it under Article 31 of Statute which allows a party to nominate an individual as a judge.

“You mishandled the case. First you failed to file your response till May 15 and then you decide to challenge the jurisdiction of the ICJ,” she said. The PPP leader said that the lawyer Pakistan chose to contest the case lacked international experience.

“Why was the government not prepared on the case?”: Khurshid Kasuri

Former Foreign Minister Khurshid Kasuri said, “Pakistan maintained that the international court doesn’t have jurisdiction over this case. The court rejected the argument. India has been successful in their demand to delay the execution, in light of the decision it appears that we have not been successful in making our case. The question here is what our Foreign Office was doing? And why was our government not prepared on the case.”

Did Sajjan Jindal influence the verdict?

While many were busy criticising the ‘weak case’, some also pointed fingers at PM Nawaz’s meeting with Indian business tycoon Sajjan Jindal which was later termed as ‘back-channel’ diplomacy.

PTI leader Asad Umar alleged that the ICJ’s decision was an outcome of the recent meeting between Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and Indian steel tycoon Sajjan Jindal in Murree.

“I guess everyone now knows what one of the things which were discussed between Nawaz
Sharif and his dear friend Sajjan Jindal was,” he said.

“We were not prepared well enough”: Former Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi

According to Geo News, Former Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi said, “Our government and Foreign Office were not expecting that the International Court of Justice will proceed on this case so quickly. Indian demands have been approved in this case. Our case was on the jurisdiction which was rejected.

When PM Nawaz`s case was presented in the court – high-level lawyers were on the court but when Pakistan`s case was in the international court, why we didn’t we use our best available resources. Did we not take this serious? If not then why didn’t we?”

“Why did Pakistan agree to the Jadhav case?”: Barrister Dr Farogh A. Nasim

Barrister Dr Farogh A. Nasim said Pakistan should not have conceded to ICJ’s jurisdiction, reported Dawn.

“India did not give consent to the Kashmir issue going to ICJ, then why did Pakistan give consent to the Jadhav case?”

He said that 17 years ago when Pakistan filed a case, ICJ said we do not have jurisdiction. “Today, ICJ did not accept that decision.”