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Sunday 5 July 2020

Jadhav meets wife, mother at Pak Foreign Affairs Ministry

Islamabad: Indian death row prisoner Kulbhushan Jadhav today met his wife and mother at the Foreign Affairs Ministry, Pakistani officials said.

Accompanied by Deputy High Commissioner JP Singh and a Pakistani woman official, TV footage showed Jadhav’s family entering the main building of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) and the door shutting behind them.

“The meeting between Jadhav and his wife and mother has started,” Pakistani officials said.

The meeting, expected to last around 30 minutes, started at around 1.35 pm. The meeting was taking place at the MOFA’s Agha Shahi Block.

This is the first meeting between Jadhav, who was convicted of espionage, and his family since his arrest on 3 March last year.

The Pakistan Foreign Office tweeted a picture of the mother and wife of Jadhav inside the building.

“The mother and wife of Commander Jadhav sitting comfortably in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Pakistan. We honour our commitments,” Foreign Office Spokesperson Mohammad Faisal said along with a picture of the visitors on Twitter.

From Pakistan’s side, Foreign Office Director India Dr Fareha Bugti was present at the meeting.

The wife and mother greeted the media persons after arrival but refused to respond to their questions.

Jadhav’s family arrived at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs from the Indian High Commission where they stayed for more than half an hour. Jadhav was at the ministry before his family arrived.

It was not known where he had been kept before being transported to the ministry.

The two women arrived in the capital via Dubai in a commercial flight and are expected to leave soon after the meeting where they will be accompanied by Singh.

TV footage showed a convoy of around seven vehicles escorting Jadhav’s family in the city.

Police and paramilitary security forces, including sharpshooters, were deployed at the MOFA to deal with any untoward security situation, they said.

Roads leading to the Constitution Avenue, on which MOFA is located, were closed for traffic. Special security passes were issued for those visiting the Foreign Office, the officials added.

Pakistan has announced it would issue photos and a video of the meeting.

The mother and wife of Jadhav were being provided with a meeting with him in the light of “Islamic traditions and based on purely humanitarian grounds,” Faisal had said.

Pakistan on 20 December issued visa to Jadhav’s wife and mother to visit Islamabad to meet him.

Jadhav, 47, was sentenced to death by a Pakistani military court on charges of espionage and terrorism in April, following which India moved the 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 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.

PTI

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