Wait till court decides on Raymond Davis: Pakistan tells US

Saturday, February 12, 2011

ISLAMABAD - The Pakistan government Saturday made it clear it will wait for the court’s decision in the case involving US official Raymond Davis, arrested for killing two Pakistanis, despite repeated pleas for his deportation to America.

“The government is not going to bow before any pressure. All these rumours that we are trying to tamper the record of Davis case are absolutely baseless,” Interior Minister Rehman Malik told reporters.

Davis, an official with the US diplomatic mission in Pakistan, was arrested Jan 27 after he shot dead two youths in Lahore. He claimed to have acted on self-defence as the two were trying to rob him.

The incident led to the death of a third Pakistani who came under the vehicle which arrived at the scene to help Davis escape from the spot.

“All my statements in this case are based on facts and we are awaiting the verdict of the court,” Malik said.

The minister also clarified that his administration has not asked for the passport of Davis and “it is still with the investigation agencies of Punjab government”.

Newly-appointed Information Minister, Firdous Ashiq Awan, said: “The government will follow the directions of the court in this case. We are a sovereign country and there is no point that US or any other external forces can arm-twist us into doing something.”

Pakistani Foreign Secretary Salman Bashir said: “The foreign office had witnessed no pressure from either the government or the US in the high-profile case.”

“It will not be advisable on part of the US to severe ties with Pakistan on such a matter,” Bashir said Saturday.

“If a diplomat commits such a crime, he does not automatically become eligible for diplomatic immunity,” he observed. “If I had been in place of Davis, I would have been ashamed to claim diplomatic immunity in such a situation.”

Carmella Conroy, principal officer of the US consulate in Lahore in a statement Friday night advocated the immediate release of Davis on diplomatic grounds.

Filed under: Immigration, India, Pakistan, World

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