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Pak violating Vienna convention by detaining Davis: Pentagon

Joining issues with the US State Department, Pentagon today said Pakistan was "violating" the Vienna Convention by detaining American diplomat Raymond Davis on murder charges.

world Updated: Mar 17, 2011 01:53 IST

Joining issues with the US State Department, Pentagon today said Pakistan was "violating" the Vienna Convention by detaining American diplomat Raymond Davis on murder charges.

But, Under Secretary of Defence for Policy, Michele Flournoy, told members of the powerful Senate Armed Services Committee said efforts are on to ensure that the case does not derail the efforts made by it in building relationship with the country.

"The US Government remains extremely concerned about the continued detention of Davis and views this as a violation of Pakistan's international commitments under the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations," Flournoy said. Flournoy said the State Department remains actively engaged with the government of Pakistan about releasing Davis as quickly as possible.

"It is critical, however, that we work to resolve this issue, so that it does not derail the important progress we have made in the last two years in building a stronger and deeper relationship between our countries," Flournoy said in her prepared testimony before the Senate Armed Services Committee. The issue was also raised by Senator John McCain, the Ranking Member of the Senate Armed Services Committee. Earlier, the State Department had accused Pakistan of violating the Vienna Convention by detaining Davis.

"When he (Davis) was detained, he identified himself to police as a diplomat and repeatedly requested immunity under the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations," State Department spokesman P J Crowley had said. "We have called for his immediate release. He is a member of the Embassy's technical administrative staff and therefore entitled to full criminal immunity. He cannot be lawfully arrested or detained in accordance with the Vienna Convention," he had added.