Foreign Minister of Pakistan Khawaja Asif on Wednesday said a U.S. diplomat who was involved in a deadly traffic accident in the federal capital Islamabad, would face legal action in accordance with the country’s law.
Col. Joseph Emmanuel Hall, the air and defense attaché of the U.S. Embassy in Islamabad, hit a motorcyclist in Islamabad on Saturday when he jumped a red light at the intersection of Margalla Road and 7th Avenue. The man, identified as Ateeq Baig, 22, was killed on the spot while the pillion rider was injured.
“The foreign office has taken up the issue with the U.S. Embassy and the attaché will be dealt with according to law,” Khawaja Asif told the parliament.
He said Col. Hall was still in Pakistan and the U.S. Embassy had assured full cooperation in the investigation.
Police have already registered a murder case against Hall, who has, however, not been arrested owing to his diplomatic immunity protected by the Vienna Convention.
On Sunday, the foreign office summoned U.S. Ambassador to Pakistan David Hale and protested the mindless killing of a Pakistani national.
Police have also requested the Interior Ministry to put the U.S. colonel’s name on the Exit Control List (ECL) to prevent him from escaping the country. However, the authorities have not yet put his name on the ECL.
The Trump administration is planning to impose restrictions on the freedom of movement of the Pakistani diplomats in the U.S. if similar limitations on the U.S. diplomats in Pakistan are not eased up until May 1, Geo News, a local broadcaster, reported.
The U.S. - Pakistan relations remain tense after President Trump’s first tweet of 2018 followed the suspension of military aid to Pakistan. In his Twitter post, Trump accused Pakistan of playing a “double-game” and providing sanctuary to members of the Afghan Taliban fighting against the American troops in Afghanistan. Islamabad has denied the charges.
This article has been adapted from its original source.
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