Retired brigadier, civilian awarded death sentence for espionage

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Pakistan’s army chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa has endorsed punishment to two senior retired army officers and one civil officer “on the charges of espionage/ leakage of sensitive information to foreign agencies prejudice to the national security”, according to a statement by the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) , the military’s media wing .

“The officers were tried under Pakistan Army Act (PAA) and Official Secret Act by separate Field General Court Marshal (FGCM) for separate cases,” said the statement.

Details of the the three individuals and the punishment accorded to them are:

Retired Lieutenant General Javed Iqbal — awarded 14 years rigorous imprisonment
Retired Brigadier Raja Rizwan — awarded death sentence
Doctor Wasim Akram (Employed at Sensitive Organisation) — awarded death sentence

According to English newspaper, Pakistan Today, ISPR also released a video statement of Major General Asif Ghafoor confirming the arrest of the two officers and their court-martial.
“Reports started circulating in the media that two senior army officers were under arrest. Yes they are. There are two officers who are under military custody on the charges of espionage,” the ISPR director general confirmed in the video.
“The army chief has ordered a field general court martial which is under process.”
Maj Gen Ghafoor said that both were separate cases and not linked to one another in any way “and there is no network as such”.
“Please keep in mind that if we have been able to get them and identify the issue, it is a success.
“These things do happen […] when the court martial process is complete, I will share whatever results emerge with you.”
According to media reports, about 400 officers of every rank have been given various punishments, including dismissal from service, over the last two years.
Earlier in February, the ISPR DG had said that the arrests of the accused officers indicated a robust accountability system in place in the armed forces.

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