Davis has diplomatic passport, not visa: Malik


ISLAMABAD – Interior Minister Rehman Malik said on Friday that Raymond Davis, a US national accused of killing two Pakistani youths in Lahore a few days ago, had a diplomatic passport but he travelled to Pakistan on a non-diplomatic visa. Talking to reporters outside the Parliament House, he said the Interior Ministry issued Davis a visa on the recommendation by the Foreign Office after due clearance by the security agencies.
“I again repeat, I never said that Davis travelled to Pakistan on a diplomatic visa, rather only holds a diplomatic passport,” he said. Some media reports quoted the interior minister as saying on Wednesday that Davis had a diplomatic passport and a diplomatic visa. This statement by the interior minister was being taken as a hint by the government for granting diplomatic immunity to Davis. The detained American is accused of killing two Pakistanis, according to him, in “self-defence”.
The US has called for Davis’ immediate release, claiming that he was a member of its embassy’s staff in Islamabad and entitled to criminal immunity. Meanwhile, a US congressional delegation, which called on Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani on Friday, demanded an immediate release of Raymond Davis, the American detained in Lahore for killing two Pakistani youths. “In a meeting with Prime Minister Gilani, a bipartisan US congressional delegation protested the continued illegal detention of the American diplomat in Lahore,” the US embassy said in a statement.
“US representatives Buck McKeon (Republican, California), John Kline (Republican, Minnesota), and Silvestre Reyes (Democrat, Texas) called on the government of Pakistan to abide by its obligation under international and Pakistani law to recognise his diplomatic immunity and immediately release him,” it said.