In Pakistan, the verdict was delivered in the case popularly known as the "Cipher case" in which former Prime Minister Imran Khan and an aide from his party were tried. The court found Khan and his aide guilty of disclosing official secrets and sentenced them to 10 years in prison each. 

Khan, who was ousted in April 2022 in a vote of no confidence in parliament, is serving a three-year prison sentence in a corruption case. The verdict in the Jipher case comes ahead of parliamentary elections on February 8, in which Khan is barred from running due to a previous conviction.

Authorities say Khan and his deputy Shah Mahmud Qureshi have the right to appeal Tuesday's verdict in the case, popularly known as the Cipher case.

Khan will not be on the ballot in February's elections, but he remains a powerful political force because of his grassroots following and anti-establishment rhetoric. Khan says the cases against him are a conspiracy to eliminate him before the election.

Khan's arrest in May 2023 was followed by violent protests across Pakistan. Authorities have since cracked down on his supporters and his party.

Pakistan's independent human rights commission said next month's parliamentary elections have little chance of being free and fair because of "pre-election rigging". It also expressed concern that authorities had rejected Khan's candidacy and that of senior members of his party.

The Cipher case is one of more than 150 filed against Khan. Other charges range from contempt of court to incitement to terrorism and violence.

Neither the government nor Khan's lawyers have publicly released the document Khan brandished, dubbed Cipher, but it appears to be diplomatic correspondence between the Pakistani ambassador to Washington and the Foreign Ministry in Islamabad.