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Pakistan extends remand of US diplomat


A Pakistani court on Thursday extended the detention of a US government employee for another eight days over the shooting deaths of two men.

“We produced the American in the court of magistrate Zafar Iqbal, who extended his remand in police custody to another eight days,” public prosecutor Abdul Samad said.
The US consular employee, whom Pakistani police identified as Raymond Davis, was arrested a week ago after shooting dead two motorcyclists, claiming that he acted in self-defence, fearing that they were about to rob him.
A third Pakistani was knocked down and killed by a vehicle from the US consulate in Lahore that tried to rescue Davis. The American was instead arrested by police and a case of double murder registered against him.
Samad said that the American would next be produced in court on February 11.
“We have to conduct further investigations, which necessitates extension in the remand,” Samad said.
The Lahore high court on Tuesday blocked any move to free the US consular employee pending further hearings, saying that it would be up to the court to determine whether he was entitled to diplomatic immunity in the case.
The incident has aroused huge controversy in Pakistan, where anti-American feelings run high, fuelled by Washington’s alliance with an unpopular government, the war in Afghanistan and US missile attacks on Islamists in the northwest.