Don’t let Davis leave Pakistan, rules court

Friday, February 18, 2011

ISLAMABAD - A Pakistan court has asked the government to ensure that Raymond Davis, a US official who is in jail after gunning down two Pakistanis, does not leave the country.

The direction came from Lahore High Court Chief Justice Ijaz Ahmad Chaudhry Thursday in response to a petition challenging the diplomatic immunity claimed by the American man.

Chaudhry said that till the petition was disposed of, Davis should remain on the “exit control list”, Dawn News reported Friday.

At the request of Deputy Attorney General Naveed Inayat Malik, the court allowed the federal government to submit a detailed reply by March 14, but restrained it from extraditing the accused.

Meanwhile, a judicial magistrate in Lahore sent Davis to jail on a 14-day judicial remand in a case related to carrying of illegal arms.

Davis was arrested Jan 27 for killing two men at an intersection in Lahore, capital of Punjab province. He said he acted in self-defence as he thought the two men were trying to rob him.

Some Pakistani media reports have said he was a spy.

Earlier, Advocate General Khwaja Harris submitted a report on behalf of the Punjab government and said it was up to the federal government to resolve the question of Davis’ immunity from criminal prosecution.

The US has sought Davis’ release claiming diplomatic immunity. The Pakistan government has asked US officials to wait for the court verdict.

Davis’ arrest has triggered a major diplomatic row between Pakistan and the US, with Washington threatening action if Islamabad did not free him.

Amid reports that the two men killed by Davis were actually intelligence operatives, Islamabad is going slow because of popular anger against Davis over the shooting.

Filed under: Immigration, India, Pakistan, World

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