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COAS endorses sentencing of two senior army officers, civilian on espionage charges

RAWALPINDI: A three-star army general has been sentenced to 14 years in jail, and a brigadier awarded the death sentence on charges of espionage by military courts in separate cases.
A doctor associated with a “sensitive organisation” has also been handed the capital punishment on similar charges.
According to a brief statement issued by the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR), Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa endorsed the punishment to the officers on the charges of espionage/leakage of sensitive information to foreign agencies prejudice to national security.The officers – identified by the military’s media wing as Lieutenant General (retd) Javed Iqbal, Brigadier (retd) Raja Rizwan, and Doctor Wasim Akram – were tried under the Pakistan Army Act (PAA) and Official Secret Act by separate Field General Court Martial (FGCM) for separate cases,Lt Gen (retd) Iqbal has been awarded 14 years rigorous imprisonment, while Brigadier (retd) Rizwan has been handed the death sentence.
Doctor Akram, who, according to the ISPR, was employed at a sensitive organisation, has also been awarded the death penalty.The ISPR, however, did not disclose the exact nature of espionage the officers have been convicted of.
A few months back, DG ISPR Maj Gen Asif Ghafoor had confirmed reports that two officers were under custody on charges of leaking sensitive information.“…Two officers are under military custody on the charges of espionage,” he had said at the news briefing.
“The army chief has ordered a field general court martial which is under process,” he added.Military officers of any ranks are accountable without any discrimination.
Accountability of former ISI chief Lt Gen (retd) Asad Durrani was also part of this across-the-board accountability process.According to statistics, some 400 officers of various ranks have been given various punishments, including reprimand, warning, caution, salary-cut, dismissal from service, and even imprisonment, during the last two years.

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