Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan on Thursday appreciated the decision of the International Court of Justice (ICJ) “to not acquit, release and return” former Indian Navy officer, Kulbhushan Jadhav to India.

“(I) appreciate ICJ’s decision not to acquit, release and return Commander Kulbhushan Jadhav to India. He is guilty of crimes against the people of Pakistan. Pakistan shall proceed further as per law,” Khan posted on Twitter.

Imran Khan’s statement came a day after the world court on Wednesday ordered Pakistan not to execute Kulbhushan Jadhav and directed “effective review and reconsideration” of his conviction and the sentence awarded to him by a military court.

Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi on Wednesday claimed the ICJ ruling on Jadhav was a “victory for Pakistan” as the top UN court did not ask for his release.

“Commander Jadhav shall remain in Pakistan. He shall be treated in accordance with the laws of Pakistan. This is a victory for Pakistan,” Qureshi tweeted.

The Foreign Office in a statement on Wednesday evening said the fact that the ICJ did not ask Pakistan to release or acquit Jadhav meant that the UN court had “not accepted India’s plea” for his release.

The Foreign Office said that Pakistan was a responsible member of the international community.

“Having heard the judgment, Pakistan will now proceed as per law,” the statement said.

It reiterated its accusations against Jadhav — that he “entered Pakistan without a visa on authentic Indian passport with a fake alias Hussain Mubarak Patel”.

It reiterated its charges that Jadhav “is responsible for acts of sabotage, espionage and multiple terrorist incidents in which scores of innocent Pakistani citizens were killed resulting into umpteen women being widowed and numerous children becoming orphans”.

Pakistan claimed that Jadhav “has confessed” to all these acts during his trial in Pakistan in front of a Judicial Magistrate. “This is a clear case of Indian state terrorism.”

While Pakistan has been claiming victory in the ICJ not ruling in favour of Kulbhushan Jadhav’s release, it has apparently forgotten that one of the clauses India put forth while approaching the top UN court was that in case Jadhav was not to be released, then Pakistan should be restrained from executing the death sentence awarded by a military court.

India in its application to the ICJ against the death sentence of Jadhav had urged that Pakistan be restrained from executing the death sentence or giving effect to the conviction of Jadhav in any manner and that he be released forthwith and Pakistan be directed to facilitate his safe passage to India.

“In the alternative, and if this Court were to find that Jadhav is not to be released, then restrain Pakistan from giving effect to the sentence awarded by the Military Court, and direct it to take steps to annul the decision of the military court, as may be available to it under the laws in force in Pakistan,” it said.

“…direct a trial under the ordinary law before civilian courts, after excluding his confession that was recorded without affording consular access, in strict conformity with the provisions of the ICCPR (International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights), with full consular access and with a right to India to arrange for his legal representation,” it added.

The world court, while rejecting all objections raised by Pakistan, directed it to grant consular access to Jadhav “without further delay”, while holding that it had “breached” the Vienna Convention in this regard by denying him this right.

The verdict was 15 to one in favour of India – the lone dissenter being from Pakistan. In a major setback for Pakistan in the high-profile verdict, the Chinese jurist and Vice President of the world court, Xue Hanqin, also backed the majority judgement.