Diplomatic tensions between Pakistan and US simmer

Diplomatic tensions between Pakistan and US simmer

*ISLAMABAD: *In the wake of simmering diplomatic tensions following a fatal traffic accident in Islamabad by the United States military attaché, the Trump administration has decided to impose new restrictions on Pakistani diplomats in the US.

The US government has reportedly prepared a new code of conduct, according to which the movement of Pakistani diplomatic staff consisting of 200 people would be limited to a 25-mile (40-kilometre) radius.

A source privy to the development told *Roznama Express* that the new restrictions will come into force in May, causing difficulties for the Pakistani staff in performing their duties.

He said that one month notice has been served to the Pakistani diplomats serving in four consulates apart from the embassy to ensure implementation on new instructions.

According to the new code of conduct, Pakistani diplomatic staff would need permission from the US authorities before embarking on a journey beyond 40 kilometres from the embassy and consulates. They would also need to keep their accommodation within the 20-mile radius of the embassy and consulates.

The development comes to fore only days after US defence and air attaché Col Joseph Emanuel Hall ’s reckless driving killed a motorcyclist and injured another in the federal capital.

Col Hall was booked in a criminal case after he hit the two motorcyclists at Daman-e-Koh intersection on Saturday.

Although the diplomat was not detained because of his diplomatic immunity, the police are now proceeding to get his local driving licence revoked.

The capital police have also sent a letter to the Ministry of Interior, asking to include Hall’s name in the Exit Control List (ECL). Another letter was sent to the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) to place the US diplomat’s name on its watch-list.