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by AFP

Pakistan will execute an Indian man arrested in the southwestern province of Balochistan last year who officials claim has confessed to being a spy for Indian intelligence, the country's powerful military said Monday.


The man, named by the army as Kulbushan Sudhir Jadhav who also goes by the alias Hussein Mubarak Patel, was found guilty by a military court and sentenced to death.

"Today, (army chief) Gen Qamer Javed Bajwa has confirmed his death sentence," a military statement said, without stating when the execution would take place.

India denied that he was a spy.

The nuclear arch-rivals routinely accuse one another of sending spies into their countries, and it is not uncommon for either nation to expel diplomats accused of espionage, particularly at times of high tension.

However death sentences have rarely been issued in such cases in recent years.

In 2013 an Indian national on death row for spying in Pakistan was killed in jail after being attacked by fellow inmates. Sarabjit Singh had been on death row for 16 years.

Balochistan, Pakistan's largest but least developed province, has been battling a years-long separatist insurgency that the army has repeatedly characterised as "terrorism" promoted by hostile states such as India.


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