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The Financial Times reports:A Pakistani police chief has accused an American official who shot two men of committing “cold-blooded” murder, in remarks that will inflame an escalating diplomatic dispute over the man’s fate.
The stand-off over the former US Special Forces soldier, who says the men tried to rob him, is damaging relations at a time when the Obama administration is trying to persuade Pakistan to do more to support its war in Afghanistan.
Washington has demanded Pakistan free the man, Raymond Davis, saying he is consular official who is entitled to diplomatic immunity and that that he opened fire after being threatened by two armed men riding a motorcycle.
The incident, which occurred last month in the eastern city of Lahore, has caused outrage in Pakistan, where many people resent Washington’s history of supporting authoritarian governments to further its foreign policy objectives in the region.
Analysts are concerned that this dispute could escalate into a bilateral crisis. The United States cannot back down. Pakistani officials are terrified of what will happen on their streets if they back down. In the middle sits Mr. Davis, a highly-regarded former Special Forces operator, in jail.
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