May 21, 2018

United States diplomat involved in road accident returns home over diplomatic immunity

15 May 2018, 08:29 | Taylor George

US diplomat Col Joseph flown out of Pakistan: sources

US diplomat involved in deadly crash leaves Pakistan

A case was registered but he was never formally arrested due to diplomatic immunity.

The officials said that USA military attache Col. Joseph Emanuel Hall was allowed to leave the capital Islamabad and head home on Monday.

A court ruling had earlier declared that Hall did not enjoy "absolute immunity" from criminal prosecution in the traffic violation and fatal accident, ordering the authorities to decide in two weeks whether his name could be placed on the exit control list (ECL).

Over the weekend, Pakistan refused to allow Hall to fly back home in a special plane sent by his country.

Dr. Mohammad Faisal, a spokesman for the Foreign Office, had also pointed out that under the articles dealing with diplomatic immunity in the Vienna Convention, the possibility of holding Hall in Pakistan for criminal proceedings was unlikely. A security official, part of Colonel Hall's security detail, had been arrested on the orders of AIG Islamabad for obstructing a police officer from performing his duty, a source had said. "We tried to get an exemption from the USA but they refused to exempt him from the diplomatic immunity". We have been in contact over the issue since April 7.

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Military Attache Col Joseph Emanuel Hall, who killed a motorcyclist in Islamabad, left Pakistan on Monday evening, the United States (US) embassy confirmed.

The United States and Pakistan imposed travel restrictions on each other's diplomats last week as the dispute continued to simmer.

The amount will be paid by the USA embassy.

Tensions are simmering between Islamabad and Washington as the United States pushes Pakistan to crack down on safe havens it allegedly provides for militants.

Facilities of hiring or shifting of rented properties without a prior no-objection certificate and overshooting visa validity periods and having multiple passports were also withdrawn.

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