News Desk |
In the latest development, General Qamar Javed Bajwa, chief of Army Staff, has confirmed punishment to two senior retired army and one civil officer.
Pakistan military chief confirms death sentences for two men – a military officer and a doctor employed at a "sensitive organisation", and 14 years imprisonment for a second military officer, for espionage and leaking information to a foreign intelligence agency: ISPR
— Asad Hashim (@AsadHashim) May 30, 2019
The said officers have been punished “on the charges of espionage/ leakage of sensitive information to foreign agencies prejudice to the national security”, a statement by the Inter-Services Public Relations said on Thursday. “The officers were tried under Pakistan Army Act (PAA) and Official Secret Act by separate Field General Court Martial (FGCM) for separate cases,” it added.
The details of the officers 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
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 confirms in the video.
PTI’s Shireen Mazari tweeted the news and said “Punished for espionage – a tale of greed and betrayal reaches its conclusion. Would be useful to know how foreign missions were apparently used so there is greater awareness.”
Punished for espionage – a tale of greed and betrayal reaches its conclusion. Would be useful to know how foreign missions were apparently used so there is greater awareness. pic.twitter.com/toXbw4hBwr
— Shireen Mazari (@ShireenMazari1) May 30, 2019
Analysts believe that the tone has been set by the armed forces that nobody is above the law and anyone selling out information for the sake of money shall be met with the same treatment.
Army sets the tone by punishing senior most officers in espionage case thru a well established accountability process. It was thorough but swift. Shouldn’t rest of the concerned systems take up the challenge to sort out all those who have harmed Pakistan in any manner?
— Lt General Ghulam Mustafa – (Retd) (@_GhulamMustafa_) May 30, 2019
It is also believed that the army has given a shut call to its critics who believe army officers are above the law.
Army Chief awards Lt Gen (R) Javed Iqbal 14 years rigorous imprisonment, & death sentences for Brig (R) Raja Rizwan & Dr Wasim on espionage charges, says ISPR.
A strong msg to all the traitors & a shut up call for those blaming Army for protecting their own against judgements pic.twitter.com/Q3Vda3y8r1
— XT (@BuzzardPk) May 30, 2019
Social media users shared the pictures of the involved officers and cursed them.
#COAS awards LtGen(R)JavedIqbal 14years rigorous imprisonment,& death sentences4Brig (R)Raja Rizwan&Dr Wasim on espionage charges,says #ISPR
A strong message2all d traitors&a shutup call4those blaming Army4protecting deir own aganst judgements#WeStandWithPakArmy #SalutePakArmy pic.twitter.com/lmHgmb4WDd
— ❤Annie Virk❤ (@VirkAnnie) May 30, 2019
Defense analyst Zaid Hamid said that “Now when Army has played a strong masterstroke by announcing executions of traitors from within its own ranks, there is NO excuse for the political Govt to show any weakness or lapse towards the traitors within their fold like Zardari, Nawaz, Altaf, PTM types.”
It is believed that the accountability must be across the board and anyone found guilty must be punished. The army has set the standard.