WION Web Team New Delhi, Delhi, India
Dec 25, 2017, 07.12 AM
Indian death row prisoner Kulbhushan Jadhav met his mother and wife at the Foreign Affairs Ministry in Islamabad for 45 minutes today.
Pakistan confirmed Mr Jadhav's meeting with family was a "humanitarian" one and did not constitute "consular access", a request India has repeatedly made.
"It was a humanitarian meeting, it was not consular access. The Indian diplomat JP Singh was present and could see the meeting but was not allowed to meet, we extended the meeting by 10 minutes on request of Jadhav," Dr Mohammad Faisal, Pakistan's Foreign Ministry spokesperson said after the meeting.
"This meeting was not consular access as we had told India that its diplomat would see the meeting but was not allowed to speak or participate in it," Pakistan's Foreign Ministry spokesperson said.
Pakistan said the glass barrier was for security reasons.
"It was for security reasons, we had already told them that you will be able to meet him but a security barrier would be there," Dr Mohammad Faisal said.
Dr Fariha Bugti, in charge of the India desk at the Pakistan Foreign Office, represented the Pakistani side at the meeting.
During a press conference after the meeting, Pakistan repeated the old allegations against Kulbhushan Jadhav who it accuses of espionage.
Photographs also showed Mr Jadhav's wife Chetankul and mother Avanti leaving the main building of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs after the meeting and then entering the main building of the Indian High Commission compound.
Pakistan has announced it would issue photos and a video of the meeting and also allow the family to interact with media if India agrees. Officials also said Jadhav's family would not interact with the media.
Jadhav was sentenced to death by a Pakistani military court on charges of espionage and terrorism in April, following which India moved the International Court of Justice (ICJ) in May. The ICJ halted his execution on India's appeal pending the final verdict by it.
Pakistan claims its security forces arrested Jadhav alias Hussein Mubarak Patel from its restive Balochistan province on March 3 last year after he reportedly entered from Iran.
India, however, maintains that Jadhav was kidnapped from Iran where he had business interests after retiring from the Indian Navy.
On December 20, Pakistan issued a visa to Jadhav's wife and mother to visit Islamabad to meet him.
(With inputs from agencies)
Pakistan confirmed Mr Jadhav's meeting with family did not constitute 'consular access'