Taliban warns Pakistan against releasing Raymond Davis

Published: February 15, 2011

A file picture dated 4 October 2009 shows chief of Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan Hakimullah Mehsud (C) sitting with Taliban Spokesman Azam Tariq (R). PHOTO: EPA

ISLAMABAD: The Pakistani Taliban warned the government on Tuesday it would punish any move to release a US consulate employee accused of murdering two Pakistanis in a case that has inflamed already strained ties with Washington.

“If (Pakistani) rulers hand him over to America then we will target these rulers. If Pakistani courts cannot punish Davis then they should hand him over to us,” said Azam Tariq, spokesman for the Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (Taliban movement of Pakistan).

“We will give exemplary punishment to the killer Davis.”

The warning from the al-Qaeda linked Taliban, which has kept up suicide bombings to destabilise Pakistan’s government despite several army offensives, underscores the charged atmosphere surrounding Davis’ case.

US Senator John Kerry was due in Pakistan as part of the Obama administration’s efforts to resolve the crisis.

Raymond Davis, the US consular employee jailed in Lahore for shooting two Pakistanis last month, says he acted in self-defence during an armed robbery.

Washington insists Davis has diplomatic immunity and should be released but the Pakistani government, fearful of a backlash from Pakistanis already wary of the United States and enraged by the shooting, says the matter should be decided in court.

On Thursday, the United States is expected to present a petition to a Lahore court to certify that Davis has diplomatic immunity and should be released.

Religious parties don’t win many votes in elections. But the government can’t afford to ignore the groups who often seize on issues concerning the United States to promote their cause.

“Of course he (Davis) should not be released. He has committed a crime and he should be punished. He doesn’t have immunity,” said Yahya Mujhaid, a spokesman for Jamaat-ud-Dawa, which was blacklisted by the UN over its links to the Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) militant group blamed for the 2008 attack on Mumbai. It denies it has links to the LeT.

“If he is released, we will register our protest but in a peaceful way. We will hold rallies … Not only us, the whole of Pakistan will protest against any such move.”

Supporters of the slain men have held protests and burned US flags. In addition to the two men Davis shot, a third man was killed when a U.S. consulate vehicle, apparently trying to rescue Davis, struck and killed a passer-by.

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Reader Comments (51)

  • Hatim
    Feb 15, 2011 - 5:31PM

    This article does a terrible job by grouping together the Taliban with peaceful religious parties. Recommend

  • feroze
    Feb 15, 2011 - 5:32PM

    Why is a paper like the tribune in its online addition even printing what these Barbarians have to say? Why give them the exposure they are craving? As it is they are targeting anything that has to do with civilization and by giving them more exposure its only going to depress the general public even more.

    I hope the editors of all the media stop this glorification of such people and their back ward thinking!!Recommend

  • Hammas Hassan
    Feb 15, 2011 - 6:53PM

    Since when did Taliban have had a say in this all? They’re talking about courts?! hilarious :DRecommend

  • Safwan
    Feb 15, 2011 - 7:15PM

    This statement is a disservice to the call to punish Davis. I think the government should thank TTP for this, because it strengthens the the former’s resolve to release Davis. It seems like TTP is provoking the government to release the man, and the government will use this statement in her favor. (my two cents)Recommend

  • Ashraf R
    Feb 15, 2011 - 7:16PM

    Now Taliban will decide on Pakistan’s foreign policy? Can Pakistan sink any lower?Recommend

  • Amanullah
    Feb 15, 2011 - 7:37PM

    It is the issue with right and wrong, Not the issue if said by any taliban or any other, A criminal must b punished, if not, i pray to ALLAH give us power to do so. AmeenRecommend

  • Feb 15, 2011 - 7:39PM

    haha that was the joke of the year. Look who is talking? Taliban who already have claimed hundreds of innocent lives through suicide attacks are curious about 2 murders and want to execute the murderer??Recommend

  • abc
    Feb 15, 2011 - 7:40PM

    I wouldn’t mind that, after all they have bled the country dry. You know who I’m talking about!Recommend

  • anonymous
    Feb 15, 2011 - 7:43PM

    “If (Pakistani) rulers hand him over to America then we will target these rulers”..Lets do it. Let’s release Davis :DRecommend

  • sri
    Feb 15, 2011 - 7:56PM

    i think it is reasonable to protest against releasing davis even if they are terrorists.Recommend

  • Ali Haider
    Feb 15, 2011 - 8:16PM

    On the title: Why the hell have you not targeted the rulers up until now? Why common innocent man? You nut jobs….Recommend

  • Ashutosh
    Feb 15, 2011 - 8:18PM

    Twelve readers had recommended feroze’s post. This speaks of who Pakistanis are scared of Taliban. If this is any indication, the day Taliban will rule Pakistan is not very far.

    Ordinary Pakistanis probably think that by burring the head in the sand, the problem gets solved automatically. Therefore, this recommendation. Very sad indeed !Recommend

  • Aamir+Ali
    Feb 15, 2011 - 8:27PM

    Taliban issue threats everyday. What I second is poster feroze’s suggestion in which Pakistani media treat the Taliban as some legitimate sort of group and publicize their threats.Recommend

  • AZ
    Feb 15, 2011 - 8:48PM

    So, the Taliban want Davis to be punished because he murdered 2 ‘Pakistani’ men. Lo and behold, they even offered to give “exemplary punishment to the killer Davis”. Quite interesting and ironic keeping in mind that the atrocities committed by the same ‘people’ (should they be allowed to be considered anything but animals) claimed countless ‘Pakistani’ lives amongst other nationalities.Recommend

  • Sana Moneer
    Feb 15, 2011 - 9:17PM

    @ feroze

    printing stuff that is present in the society and is inwardly crumbling it down to bits is not glorification, my friend. it is the job of any mass medium to put forward the ‘sentiments’ of those who have been time and again exposed by the very same newspaper as those who are most responsible for the demise of progressive and actually rational thought in the country. if you know, without the having the reporter to mention who yahya mujahid is, what group he belongs to and what incidents he and his organization is responsible for, then its hats off to the media actually for printing this kind of stories.part of the job is to draw reaction from sane thinking minds like yours. plz direct your vendetta towards the Taliban and not the paper. cheers, buddy. Recommend

  • TRUE PAK
    Feb 15, 2011 - 9:48PM

    what about the several thousands of innocent people killed by the TTP suicide bombers? They ‘brainwash’ the would be bombers by showing them atrocities against muslims and then inturn send those bombers to kill innocent muslims.They should instead support Davis i.e both have killed innocent people.Recommend

  • SAMMY
    Feb 15, 2011 - 10:14PM

    give the man back , ask the embassy for a list of dips posted in pk , no more special privileges like unmarked cars and licenses to firearms !! treat the americans like the other diplomats in islamabad . stop begging for aid , lets tighten our belts and put an end to being a colony !!! people please , we cant be independent if we are at the financial mercy of other countries !!Recommend

  • najam chaudhry
    Feb 15, 2011 - 10:29PM

    no one is on DAVIS side there in pakistan ,
    now tribune wants anti-taliban people to be in favour of DAVIS, because they are supposed to be against taliban in every act, even if they recite the kalima ….Recommend

  • karachiite
    Feb 15, 2011 - 11:02PM

    Pakistani Taliban are actually enjoying Davis’s detention as there has been no drone strike since his detention. Recommend

  • MM
    Feb 15, 2011 - 11:11PM

    how ironic!Recommend

  • sara ahmed
    Feb 15, 2011 - 11:22PM

    I really wish that davis is released. at least that way, we will have people of pakistan on the streets to take matters in their own hands. maybe this is just the push pakistan needs.

    on a more serious note, what the hell even happened to that vehicle that killed the innocent third man??? isnt that a hit and run case and if so, shouldnt that be of a main concern and the culprits given punishment of the appropriate degree?????

    realy goes to show what pakistan has really come to…Recommend

  • Mujtaba Abid
    Feb 15, 2011 - 11:24PM

    3 pakistani diplomats were arrested in foreign countries but then released because they have the diplomatic immunity, one was carrying cocain, one was arrested while having sex in a public place and the 3rd one was arrested with RDX(explosive) in Nepal, but as all of them had the Diplomatic immunity so they were released !
    its a law, we can not do any thing about it ! Recommend

  • Mujtaba Abid
    Feb 15, 2011 - 11:26PM

    and some one ask these crazy Taliban, Raymond has killed just 3 people and these Taliban have killed thousands of Pakistani citizens, so they should have a trial first not Raymond !Recommend

  • Ahmed
    Feb 16, 2011 - 12:20AM

    Ashok pakistanis are fighting against indian back talebans, what ferozs comment infer is that the newspaper should not give importance to the what these scums think. But i guess its not your fault you just like to poke at pakistanis. sad!Recommend

  • Meekal Ahmed
    Feb 16, 2011 - 1:03AM

    I agree. Why give them publicity? What else would they say?Recommend

  • Sana
    Feb 16, 2011 - 1:52AM

    Taliban have suddenly developed concern for murdered Pakistanis when they murder at a much higher rate. Now that’s something.Recommend

  • Ali Adnan
    Feb 16, 2011 - 2:32AM

    Taliban always come in handy to US help – be it re-enforcing the Neo-Cons aim to de-islamize Pakistan by throwing dirt on the very Islam’s face by committing such grossly acts of terror …
    Secondly, today, they’ve come in handy by throwing their discord against an issue – as per any psychological analysis, if we’re bound to be against a person for what he stands up for, we’ll be against it in all issues ..
    One more clue as for whom the Taliban work for …

    “Its a Game Preserve” as Mohsin Hamid called it in his recent article on Dawn…Recommend

  • Kay Kay
    Feb 16, 2011 - 3:43AM

    Ohh so wait, let me get this straight. If they (the rulers) do hand them over, only THEN you will target them….along with 50 other innocent humans? Okay thanks for telling us, we shall keep that in mind nowRecommend

  • F Robinson
    Feb 16, 2011 - 5:49AM

    Pakistani government is run by MEN and not by LAWS.
    US diplomat Raymond Davis can not get justice in Pakistan.Pakistan is violating International law. Free US diplomat Raymond Davis.Recommend

  • Naeem Siddiqui,Australia
    Feb 16, 2011 - 5:54AM

    Express Tribune should be ashamed of giving media coverage to these terrorists and gang of crimnals TTP who have already killed thousdands of Pakistani men women and children. Recommend

  • Ashraf R
    Feb 16, 2011 - 6:38AM

    @Mujtaba Abid:
    Well said. Even though what Davis did is just not acceptable, Pakistan is a signatory to the Vienna Convention. The law should prevail no matter how unsavoury it may seem. I think, at least, Pakistan should negotiate for the release of Dr.Aafia and also seek financial compensation for the victims’ families.Recommend

  • Zarmeena
    Feb 16, 2011 - 6:56AM

    Okay this one goes to all out there ! ! !

    Davis committed a crime, rather a torrential crime but that doesn’t hold him a criminal outright. Didn’t you see it in the news- 2 men who got murdered were armed- there weapons were collected from the very sight where the incident took place- infact one was wearing a weapon belt too.

    How can we overlook those things? Why is our media so much misleading us?Lets not talk about media, are we blind ourselves? Don’t we see how easily media manipulates things?

    The worst part is that most among us,infact majority have we stopped having their own opinions- since they deem media’s opinion as their own opinion.

    Why are we so much against Mr.Raymond Davis? Because he is a US consular employee? Why don’t we once try to put ourselves in his shoes and figure out what we would have done if we were in his place? What if someone had attacked us in the same way?

    Then we Muslims talk about morality and equality? How shockingly insane can we be!The truth is majority of people among us are either emotional poops or religious bigots, unfortunately the sane people rarely exist among us anymore.

    Lets leave Raymond Davis case on courts to decide.Lets not make a havoc of this whole incident!!

    Peace ! ! !Recommend

  • khalid
    Feb 16, 2011 - 7:03AM

    If some one is certified as diplomat, only and only then he can be given immunity, other then that, every one should face court as per set country rules.Recommend

  • Waheed
    Feb 16, 2011 - 11:10AM

    What is all this Non-sense. It’s a straight forward Murder case. Let the court decide.Recommend

  • ABD
    Feb 16, 2011 - 11:59AM

    @Ashutosh….the generalisation that Taliban willl somehow rule Pakistan one day is abolute garbarage and ridicilous to even process. Most of us don’t even speak the same language as Taliban, how do u expect them to somehow win over the country one day?Recommend

  • Khalid Khan
    Feb 16, 2011 - 2:33PM

    Davis himself confessed that he is works as a Consultant. Does he qualify for immunity? In case a Pakistani or a muslim diplomat would have committed the same offence in Washigton or New York. Would He be qualified for mmunity. However, In this case we dont require any assistance from Taliban they should have targetted our corrupt politicians much before instead of poor public.Recommend

  • Khalid Rahim
    Feb 16, 2011 - 3:40PM

    This warning comes from the dubious talibans created by joint venture between RAW and her partners who have ” Special Interest” in this region.Recommend

  • Feb 16, 2011 - 4:04PM

    American politicians don’t want Raymond Allen David to face the music for his crimes in Pakistan. The court trial would open Pandora’s Box and set a dangerous precedent for future trials, and expose other American misdeeds in Pakistan and elsewhere. Pakistan courts have the right to rule on the crminal case without any blackmails, economic and political pressures. Davis may be released after his conviction only when American politicians close down all covert operations in Pakistan, stop drone attacks, write off the debts, etc.Recommend

  • Ashutosh
    Feb 16, 2011 - 9:53PM

    @ABD:
    Taliban is a cancer at the first stage today. It can be treated today. However if you people prefer to ignore it at a later stage Pakistani will have to pay a huge price (both monitory and human) at the best.

    Davis has to be dealt as per the law of the land, the trail should be fair and open trail, he should be given full opportunity to defend himself and he should have the right to challenge the trail court verdict if it goes against him.

    You should ask Taliban who are they to decide about what punishment to be given to Davis or anyone else? Otherwise …Recommend

  • romm
    Feb 16, 2011 - 11:35PM

    Davis is accomplice of Talibans in all the crimes/terrorist acts committed in Pakistan. If handed over to TTP, he shall be the Happiest man around.Recommend

  • SUB
    Feb 17, 2011 - 11:43AM

    Whatever they call themselves, I think it’s an exaggeration to use the term Taliban for these murderers. Taliban means students.Recommend

  • SUB
    Feb 17, 2011 - 11:52AM

    @ All those pro Vienna Con. law abiding citizens, I have a question? What makes you believe that RD has a right to enjoy this immunity? Only the American spokespeople, Friday Times & Najam Sethi say so? Previously the man in charge Mr. Qureshi says other wise and on behalf of the Foreign Dept. Everybody choses to have the truth that suits them better.

    If the Americans had some documentary evidence they would not be so polite and apologetic by now. They would have stormed the media & since its almost three weeks and anything by now believe to have been fabricatedRecommend

  • Feb 17, 2011 - 12:13PM

    Well, talibans sucks, they don’t care about humans.Recommend

  • Uza Syed
    Feb 17, 2011 - 1:42PM

    Taliban is cancer and many many in public life and claims to leadership here are infested with this malignant phenomenon. You know what I mean? Recommend

  • Akim
    Feb 17, 2011 - 3:46PM

    Shame on all of you people, I can not believe what i am reading… instead of accusing Raymond you people are discussing Taliban… If the government failed to give justice to the 3 innocent Pakistani citizens then People will go to Taliban for Quick Justice…
    As far as Pakistani Taliban are Concern they are no danger to Pakistan… The war which is in Tribal area is an American War for the hold of Afghanistan and security of India and Israel.

    These tribe men lived in Pakistan for centuries and always defended Pakistan… But when Pakistan Govt attacked them on the wishes of America then they have all the right to take revenge…

    Its a same case like Davis…
    The persons he killed and another 2 American ran over other Pakistani, their families want Davis and other 2 to be hanged till death, because they killed them without any reason.
    On the wish of America Pakistan army attacked on Tribal area with out any reason (Though they say Al-Qaeda and Senior Afghan Taliban Leader are there, haven’t found any yet). So the tribe men want revenge according to Islamic Law…

    My point is Why Taliban are bad asses and Raymond is NOT . . . Recommend

  • feroze
    Feb 17, 2011 - 4:16PM

    @Akim:
    Did you read the headline of the article? It is about the Taliban issuing a threat against the Government on a government matter.

    We dont know what motivated Davis to do what he did nor do we know yet if he enjoys immunity. If he does he will be set free irrespective of how what when where. If he dosen’t have immunity he will be tried and if there is evidence he did it in self defense he will be freed. If it is found it wasn’t in self defense he will face the consequences.

    How on earth can you “justify” the Taliban’s behavior irrespective of what is happening in the Tribal lands. If Pakistan had said ‘No” to the US when the “war on terror” began you would not be having access to a computer leave alone commenting on a news story online because we would have been in the stone age. And even if the Taliban were fighting against an invading force what the hell have they been doing in Pakistan since 2005, blowing up thousands of innocents and thousands of OUR own armed forces personnel!!!

    Appears your not really a rational thinker. You want Taliban type justice then suggest you move to NWA asap.Recommend

  • Uza Syed
    Feb 17, 2011 - 9:16PM

    @Akim:

    You failed to understand the difference between a greater evil and a lesser one —– Taliban is greater evil and hence must be dealt with all we have. Davis killed two of us, these demons have their malicious designs against all of us, the whole of Pakistan and its people. They impose an existential threat to the Pakistani nation and hence we as people must do all we can to extriminate this menace, even if it means joining their enemies.

    There’s nothing to discuss about R.Davis, let our courts decide it now, that is if you trust the competence of our judges and fairness of our judiciary. We ought to discuss them and expose them and condemn these, Talibans, enemies of Pakistan as well as Islam. They neither believe in Pakistan nor accept our judicial system, they must be destroyed to the last barbarian. We got get rid of every single rat from our country. The word Taliban ought to be banished from any civilized vocabulary if not from the lexicons altogether. Recommend

  • Maria
    Feb 18, 2011 - 9:49AM

    If the Taleban warn us not to release Davis, it only means we should release him! These animals have killed so many innocents that they have lost any right to speak about justice. They have done more harm to this nation that any foreigner- notwithstanding the fact that many of these Taleban criminals are on the payroll of foreigners intent on causing mischief in Pakistan.Recommend

  • GOD IS ONE
    Feb 18, 2011 - 2:13PM

    By the grace of Almighty, there should be a day where Indo/Pak define terms to the world.

    ALLAH HU AKBAR !!! JAI SHRI RAM !!!Recommend

  • Hanif Awan
    Feb 19, 2011 - 1:48PM

    What a law of TALIBAN! If they kill us ruthlessly,in masajed schools, markets or in offices,they are justified but otherwise they come out as a protector. WAAAAAAAAAH G WAAAAAAAAAAAAAH.What can we say,under these HORRIBLE circumstances.SIMLY NOTHING,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,Recommend

  • Feb 20, 2011 - 12:37PM

    good newsRecommend

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