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US to Restrict Movement of Pakistani Diplomats from May 1, Radius is 40km

Recently, Pakistan had summoned US Ambassador David Hale and lodged a strong protest over the killing of a motorcyclist in a road accident involving a vehicle driven by a senior US diplomat.

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Updated:April 18, 2018, 11:48 AM IST
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US to Restrict Movement of Pakistani Diplomats from May 1, Radius is 40km
Image for representation.
New Delhi: Pakistani diplomats in the United States will have "reciprocal restrictions" on their movement from May 1, a senior US State Department official confirmed on Tuesday. This means that Pakistan’s diplomats will be forced to stay within 40 km of the city that they are posted in, Dawn.com reported.

In an interview with the Voice of America’s Uzbek service, Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs Thomas Shannon said the United States was doing so because Islamabad had already imposed similar restrictions on US diplomats in Pakistan.

“Typically, these kinds of restrictions are reciprocal in nature, so I’ll just leave it at that,” said Shannon. “Our diplomats are under travel restrictions. They can travel further, but they have to notify the government of Pakistan.”

The State Department official tried to downplay the impact of the US decision by adding that such practices were “very common in diplomacy”, and instead of focusing on this the need was to look at continued engagement between the two countries.

“What’s important here, what’s important to note and underscore is that we’ve had some very fruitful conversations with the government of Pakistan about events inside of Afghanistan,” he said. “It’s my hope that we’re going to be able to build on those in a way that helps this broader reconciliation process.”

Recently, Pakistan had summoned US Ambassador David Hale and lodged a strong protest over the killing of a motorcyclist in a road accident involving a vehicle driven by a senior US diplomat.

A fast-moving Land Cruiser, driven by Col Joseph Emanuel Hall, the defence and air attache at the US embassy, jumped the red light and hit a motorcycle carrying two men at a traffic signal near Islamabad's Daman-e-Koh area.

The incident was compared with the 2011 incident when a CIA contractor Raymond Davis was arrested in Lahore on charges of killing two Pakistani citizens.

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| Edited by: Ahona Sengupta
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