Jaul authorities fear ‘Davis’ may be killed by American to shut him up. Image via Wikipedia
Pakistan has never arrested an American mercenary before, so there is a learning curve. Islamabad has increased the security around the US national “Raymond Davis”. Fearing that the high-profile prisoner may be killed the Pakistani Police, Intelligence, Civilian and Military authorities have taken a few extraordinary security measures to protect Davis. They have also planned to keep Davis at some distance from the U.S. officials visiting him. The ajil authorities decided to disallow physical contact between Davis and U.S. officials, who visit him. “Davis’ visitors would now be allowed to interact with him from across a glass wall, as it happens in the West and the United States. There is apprehensions about a possible attempt on “Davis” life. Some suspect that the Americans could take “Davis” out because he knows too much. The Russian Agencies have him identified as part of the CIA Task Force with deep links to the terrorists.
According to news reports emanating from Pakistan the new security measures include limiting physical contact between Davis and the U.S. officials and diplomats. According to officials a directive has been issued to strictly check the food provided to the American killer. Outside food will not be allowed to be given to the CIA mercenary. According to a new report “A food committee has been constituted, which would ensure that he is not provided poisoned food in the jail.” According to the pres reports “Even chocolates, brought by the U.S. officials, would not be provided to Davis.” Surveillance cameras had also been installed zeroing in on Davis in the Kot Lakhpat Jail.
“Davis”, despite being a lowly technical assistant, has the kind of importance that U.S. President Barack Obama had to ask for his early release and an influential Senator John Kerry rushed to Pakistan to try to take him back to the U.S.. It snot often that Pakistan arrests a diplomat, especially one carrying a customized Block Pistol which uses an illegal bore.
Police in Lahore arrested “Raymond Davis” after he shot dead two Pakistanis on Jan. 27. He shot the kids in the back (shooting them through the front windshield of his vehicle) and then got out of his vehicle walked over the injured cyclists and then pumped five bullets into each young man. Davis claimed that he killed them in self defense because they were trying to rob him. Davis was in his colossal bullet-proof SUV, they were on puny 70 cc motorbikes. How could they rob him?
The U.S. government demanded the urgent release of Davis with conflicting statements about his status. The case is still in the Lahore High Court which has placed Davis’ name in the exit control list. The court has directed the Pakistani government to decide within 15 days that whether Davis is a diplomat or not. The Court has also directed the Police to find the other murderer.
The key document governing diplomatic immunity is the 1961 Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations, specifically articles 29, 31, 37, and 39. :
Article 29: A diplomatic agent “shall not be liable to any form of arrest or detention.”
It is obvious that Mr. “Davis” was not a diplomat. Pakistan Law requires the diplomat be identified as such and that his name be submitted to the Pakistani Foreign Office which has the option of approving the diplomatic immunity or not. Mr. Davis’s name was not on the list of US diplomats on the day of the accident. The US Embassy tried to submit his name the next day
According to Brig (Retd) Shaukat Qadir “On January 25th 2011, just two days before Davis shot and killed the two young Pakistanis, the US Embassy submitted a list of its diplomatic and non-diplomatic staff in Pakistan to the Pakistani Foreign Office (FO), as all foreign nations are required to do annually. The list included 48 names. Raymond Davis was not on the list. The day after Davis shot and killed the two Pakistanis, the US Embassy suddenly submitted a “revised” list to the Foreign Office which added Davis’ name!
When Pakistani police took Davis into custody on January 27th, he had on his person an ordinary American passport with a valid ordinary Pakistan visa, issued by the Pakistan Embassy in Washington. On January 28th, a member of the US Consulate wanted the Pakistani police to exchange that passport in Davis’ possession with another one. The fresh passport being offered was a diplomatic passport with a valid diplomatic visa dated sometime in 2009. This visa was stamped in Islamabad by the FO!”
It gets ridiculously funnier. The prosecutor representing the Punjab government has presented two letters from the US Embassy as evidence before the Lahore High Court, forwarded to the Punjab government through the FO. The first letter, dated January 27, reads: “Davis is an employee of the US Consulate General Lahore and holder of a diplomatic passport.” The second, dated February 3rd, states that Davis is a member of the “administrative and technical staff of the US Embassy Islamabad!” Just how gullible do the Americans take Pakistanis to be!
The Washington Post admits that “The U.S. embassy complicated matters by first sending a diplomatic note to the Pakistani Foreign Ministry on Jan. 27 describing Davis as “an employee of U.S. Consulate General Lahore and holder of a diplomatic passport.” A second note, on Feb. 3, described him as “a member of the administrative and technical staff of the U.S. embassy.”The difference in the phrasing of Davis’s employment confirms that if his status had been accpeted “Davis” would have been covered by 1963 Vienna Convention on Consular Relations, and thus has a lesser form of immunity. Foreign Minsiter Mahmood Quresh clearly stated that “Davis” did not have blanket and universal immunity that the the US has claimed”
“But consular staff also enjoy immunity from the jurisdiction of the receiving state with respect to their consular functions.” Mr. “Davis” was not perfoming any Consular functions in Mozung Chungi.
Article 31:”A diplomatic agent shall enjoy immunity from the criminal jurisdiction of the receiving State,” with certain exceptions involving property and commercial activity.
Article 37: “Members of the administrative and technical staff of the mission, together with members of their families” will have the same privileges and immunities in articles 29 and 31 as long as they are not nationals or permanent residents of the country. The one exception is that they are not immune from civil suits for acts performed outside the course of their official duties.
Article 39: “Every person entitled to privileges and immunities shall enjoy them from the moment he enters the territory of the receiving State on proceeding to take up his post or, if already in its territory, from the moment when his appointment is notified to the Ministry for Foreign Affairs or such other ministry as may be agreed.”
The Notification is missing in the case of Mr. “Davis”.
Article 43 of that Convention states that “consular officers and consular employees shall not be amenable to the jurisdiction of the judicial or administrative authorities of the receiving State in respect of acts performed in the exercise of consular functions.” There are exceptions for some civil disputes, such as “damage arising from an accident in the receiving State caused by a vehicle, vessel or aircraft.”
–the key words are in respect of acts PERFORMED IN THE EXERCISE OF HIS CONSULAR FUNCTIONS.” Mr. “Davis” while he was shooting two kids in the back (through the front windshield of his SUV) with an illegal Block pitol was obviously not performing his Consular functions. In fact there are no identifiable Consular Functions which Mr. “Davis” performed at any time. He was visitng places whic are no go areas and taking pictures of places which photography is prohibited.
Even the Washington Post admitted that “President Obama, however, may have pushed the envelope when he referred to Davis as “our diplomat.” Davis may have had diplomatic cover, but not many diplomats carry a Glock pistol — and then use it with lethal results. The circumstances of his employment — and the incident in Lahore — remain too murky to make a definitive judgment on the president’s statement at this point”