Diplomats’ movement: US pushes Pakistan to ease restrictions

Ambassador Munter meets Army chief Gen Kayani.

Kamran Yousaf August 11, 2011

ISLAMABAD: The United States has launched fresh efforts to convince Pakistan’s security establishment to ease travel restrictions on its diplomats and review a decision of expelling American military trainers in the aftermath of the Abbottabad raid.

US Ambassador Cameron Munter met Army chief General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani on Tuesday at the General Headquarters in Rawalpindi. Both sides confirmed the meeting but would not divulge details.

“Those were private discussions and I am not in a position to comment on it,” said US Embassy spokesperson Alberto Rodriguez.

However, a Pakistani military official told The Express Tribune that the two “must have discussed the ongoing tension between the two countries.”

Some TV channels reported that the US envoy sought Gen Kayani’s intervention to lift restrictions imposed on the movement of US diplomats.

Pakistan recently started implementing new measures that restricted the movement of foreign diplomats and non-diplomats in the country.

The US ambassador was stopped briefly at the Islamabad airport by officials a few days back for not having a travel permit that he was supposed to have from the foreign office. The ambassador was, however, allowed to continue with his travel to Karachi.

Published in The Express Tribune, August 11th, 2011.