ISLAMABAD: Foreign Minister Khawaja Asif told the Lower House on Wednesday that the United States (US) Embassy official who killed a motorcyclist during a road accident in Islamabad last week was still in the country.
Asif made the remarks in the National Assembly in response to a lawmaker’s question on the status of the case following rumours that the diplomat might have left the country.
Asif assured the House that the law will take its course in the case, adding that the US Embassy had assured the government of cooperation in the matter.
He added that police were also investigating the case.
A US Embassy vehicle with its Defence and Air Attaché Joseph Emanuel Hall behind the wheel rammed into a motorcycle in the federal capital on Saturday, killing a young man and injuring another. Following the accident, police impounded the diplomat’s car and registered a case. However, after an initial probe, the official was let go but his vehicle remains impounded.
Police sources explained later that the official could not be arrested owing to the Vienna Convention. Officials later expressed apprehension that the diplomat might be whisked out of the country, and according to some reports, wrote to the Interior Ministry in this regard to place Hall’s name on the Exit Control List.
Later, the minister stated that three Pakistanis were presently incarcerated in the controversial US-run special prison in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, adding that the government was in touch with the US administration over the matter.
He claimed that former army chief and president General (r) Pervez Musharraf picked up and transferred Pakistanis, suspected to be terrorists, to the US in return for bounty money.
When Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf member Ali Khan brought up the issue of Pakistan’s prime minister going through security checks during his visit to the US, Asif clarified that Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi was on a private visit to America and had not sought official protocol.Moreover, during today’s session, the Foreign Ministry submitted in the assembly a written response on the number of Pakistanis who have settled abroad.