ISLAMABAD: United States Wednesday clarified that U.S. national Raymond Davis, involved in the murder of two Pakistanis, has diplomatic immunity under Vienna Convention and he could not be arrested or tried by any Pakistani court.
According to diplomatic sources, who explained the legal obligations of Vienna Convention, Davis had been notified on February 20 as a member of administrative and technical staff of U.S. embassy in Islamabad therefore, he had the diplomatic immunity.
The sources said the administrative and technical staff under the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations enjoys international privileges and immunities. “We still believe that Davis is member of the administrative and technical staff of the Embassy in Islamabad and is entitled to full immunity from criminal prosecution and should not be arrested or detained,” said a source while commenting on difference of opinion on the issue of diplomatic immunity to Davis. The sources said, Pakistan is signatory to the treaty to which U.S is also party without reservation, along with 185 other countries and hoped that Pakistan, as mentioned by Prime Minister Syed Yusuf Raza Gilani, will abide by the treaty on the issue of Davis.
The sources said, if there is dispute on the implementation on the articles of Vienna Convention, then the matter can be taken to the International Court of Justice. Clarifying the jurisdiction of Pakistani courts to decide the issue of immunity, the sources said and added, Pakistani courts have not the jurisdiction to take up this matter as under Vienna Convention.
The sources said, he could be just declared “Persona Non-Grata” and expelled from Pakistan.
Referring to the issue of diplomatic passport and diplomatic visa necessary for diplomatic immunity, the sources clarified that there is no need to have diplomatic passport or diplomatic visa, it is the discretion of any government under Vienna Convention to appoint any one in the embassy and the person will have the diplomatic immunity. The sources said, 99 percent of such cases, are resolved through diplomatic negotiations which are underway between Pakistan and United States on the issue of Davis. There is one important case that was taken to International Court of Justice and it was done in the case of Iranian hostages in 1979. A diplomatic source in U.S. embassy Islamabad also clarified that Raymond Davis did not go on hunger strike.-ONLINE