US diplomats in Pakistan carrying loaded guns

Daredevil

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Speaks a lot about the security situation in major cities of Pakistan and the trust the diplomats put in the Pakistani security establishment.

US diplomats in Pakistan carrying loaded guns

Amir Mir
Sunday 5 July 2009

LAHORE: The increasing sense of insecurity among the American diplomatic staff stationed in Pakistan can be gauged from the fact that most of them are carrying loaded guns and other such weapons on the pretext of self-protection while moving around in the federal capital.

This embarrassing development for Pakistan government came to light recently when several US diplomats in different instances were intercepted by Islamabad police while carrying guns and other weapons. But the police authorities had to let them off because of the diplomatic immunity they enjoy. However, in view of the rising number of such incidents taking place in the federal capital, Islamabad police high ups have sought a clear policy from the Ministry of Interior, as to how to deal with the issue.

In a most recent incident, a senior US diplomat was spotted carrying a loaded pistol in front of Serena Hotel located in the federal capital’s high security Red Zone area. In another incident on June 22 2009, three American diplomats were caught by the police with assault guns in their vehicle while returning from Peshawar. The vehicle bearing a fake license plate was stopped by the police at Khyber Checkpoint in G-9 Sector of Islamabad and arms were recovered during search of the vehicle. In yet another episode early this month, the Islamabad police got hold of two US diplomats near Super Market of the federal capital for possessing weapons.

According to the laid down diplomatic rules an regulations, diplomats stationed anywhere in Pakistan are by and large required to get authorisation from the Ministry of Interior before moving out of Islamabad. However, in this case, the American diplomats had traveled to Peshawar without either getting permission or giving any intimation to the Pakistani authorities. In each of these incidents the security personnel of the American embassy instantly rushed to the places where these diplomats were caught and search was allowed in their presence. While justifying the acts of their diplomats, the US security staffers have usually maintained that they were carrying guns under instructions from their high ups in view of the worsening law and order situation in Pakistan and the ever-rising number of threats coming from the jehadi mafia to target the American officials stationed in Pakistan.

Some senior foreign office officials in Islamabad say the possession of arms by diplomats require explicit approval by the host government, which is responsible for their security. However, he wasn’t sure, if the US embassy had been granted such authorisation or if the Americans ever requested for it. But, the official said that it was certainly a case of abuse of diplomatic immunity, which did not allow them under any circumstances to carry arms. Police officials in their background discussions also insisted that it was an illegal practice, but they were helpless in stopping it.
 

Antimony

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Speaks a lot about the security situation in major cities of Pakistan and the trust the diplomats put in the Pakistani security establishment.
Don't they have Secret Service security details?
 

Daredevil

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Don't they have Secret Service security details?
Who knows?. In Pakistan, nothing is sure, they are taking their measures to protect themselves when sh!t hits the fan.
 

Dark Sorrow

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What happened to the diplomatic security service?
 

Ratus Ratus

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Oh for crying out loud..
Try some other form of conspiracy theory..

There are enough people in USA carrying concealed side arms and in Washington DC, an extension in Pakistan is next to nothing.. It is legal in the US also.
 

Antimony

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Oh for crying out loud..
Try some other form of conspiracy theory..

There are enough people in USA carrying concealed side arms and in Washington DC, an extension in Pakistan is next to nothing.. It is legal in the US also.
It is a right americans enjoy in their country. However, in another country, I would expect restrictions on visitors/ foreigners.

Of course, in the US, some states (not all) allow long term visa holder to own and carry guns.

It would be enlighting to know Pakistani laws about this. If the laws do not allow that, then this is clearly a violation
 

ZOOM

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Oh for crying out loud..
Try some other form of conspiracy theory..

There are enough people in USA carrying concealed side arms and in Washington DC, an extension in Pakistan is next to nothing.. It is legal in the US also.
Atleast you may have some sense of differentiation when it comes to objective of possessing a weapon, hence you cannot bring the reasoning of what is legal in one part of the world must be applicable for the same to the other part.
 

Singh

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Oh for crying out loud..
Try some other form of conspiracy theory..

There are enough people in USA carrying concealed side arms and in Washington DC, an extension in Pakistan is next to nothing.. It is legal in the US also.
Sir with due deference.
The responsibility for the security and safety of the diplomats is primarily of the state hosting them. In the case of Pak, it is a nuclear armed state with one of the world's largest armed forces, yet the American diplomatic contingent is looking after its own security.
Pak is not even trying to correct the situation or even protesting, in effect acknowledging their failure and subservient attitude. This is a national shame for Pak.
 

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