Pakistani authorities bar USA envoy involved in mishap from leaving country


Colonel Joseph Hall, a defence attaché, accompanied by eight people from the US Embassy had reached Nur Khan Air Base in Rawalpindi to board a special aircraft that had arrived from Bagram base in Afghanistan.

A senior Pakistani Intelligence official later told The New York Times that Hall was questioned by police in Islamabad. Consequently, two riders of the bike suffered injuries and one of them, 22-year-old Ateeq Baig, succumbed to his injuries. Earlier in the week, Islamabad made a song and dance about the UN Al-Qaida/ISIL Sanctions Committee not approving Pakistan's proposal to list Umer Khalid Khorasani, aka Abdul Wali, the leader of Jamaat-ul-Ahrar, ostensibly because of U.S. objection, although Pakistan itself continues to shield terrorists such as Hafiz Saeed and Masood Azhar. A US Embassy spokesman refused to comment on the matter, it said.

The Kohsar police arrested Syed Taimoor Iqbal from the parking area of the district and sessions court Islamabad as he had allegedly threatened and assaulted the police officials besides assisting a U.S. diplomat, escape from police custody after a fatal traffic accident.

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The issue has further strained ties between Pakistan and US.

Pakistan on Thursday had confirmed that its diplomats in the United States will face travel restrictions from May 11. Washington later suspended its security assistance to Pakistan.

'Since Joseph is understood to have diplomatic immunity, Pakistan's refusal to let him leave the country will be seen by Washington as a wholly unjustifiable and illegal act, ' he added. The permission for Hall to leave was not granted and the special aircraft returned to Bagram at around 4pm, according to the report.

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'My son will never come back and we will consult with our relatives and village community before negotiating the agreement.

'We are ready for agreement but on the condition of his arrest, ' he said, referring to Colonel Hall. So far no government official or U.S. Embassy official has offered us the agreement'.

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