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Pakistan and the US are restricting diplomats' travels by creating new strains on ties



ISLAMABAD, Pakistan-Pakistan, has issued travel restrictions to United States diplomats on Friday, the latest in a series of retaliatory measures threatening to overthrow already-tense relations to their worst levels in years

The same day, the United States refused to allow diplomats working at the Pakistan Embassy in Washington to travel around the city without authorization from within 25 miles.

The United States has long complained about Pakistani police and security officials are frequently inciting United States diplomats and their staff to stop traffic and give quotes that take a lot of time and effort to be resolved. Six weeks ago, the State Department threatened to impose a travel restriction on the Pakistani diplomatic corps in Washington if the harassment did not end by Friday.

American officials imposed restrictions on Friday.

In a letter from the Pakistan Ministry of Foreign Affairs The officials who were delivered to the US embassy in Islamabad on April 7 declared that they had set up an accelerated mechanism to address American complaints of harassment on April 27 but had not yet received a single complaint.

While the State Department's restrictions apply only to diplomats assigned to the embassy in Washington, and their family members, Pakistan's restrictions apply to all American diplomats stationed anywhere in Pakistan.

Pakistan has also imposed other restrictions, including tinted windows on embassy cars and the use of diplomatic plates personal vehicles of diplomats. Both sides said they would waive their respective restrictions on a case-by-case basis.

"We have received official notifications of new restrictions imposed on US diplomats in Pakistan," said Gregory McLean, Foreign Ministry spokesman.

Asked if the United States would respond to Pakistan's even harsher measures, McLean declined to comment.

"We have regular exchanges with our Pakistani counterparts," he said. "We do not discuss details about diplomatic talks."

Security concerns have hindered some travel by American diplomats to Pakistan, but the new borders are making it impossible for diplomats to leave some of the country's major cities.

The Trump government announced that it had shut down almost all of the $ 1.3 billion in Pakistani security forces, an announcement that only three days after President Trump complained on Twitter that Pakistan was us "lies only" & deception "and accused them of" providing a safe haven for the terrorists we chase in Afghanistan. "

The Trump government also sought to strengthen relations with India, Pakistan's bitter rival.

Shuja Nawaz of the Atlantic Council, a. Emagazine.credit-suisse.com/app/art … = 157 & lang = DE The Washington – based research group said the mutual travel restrictions signaled "a further decline in this difficult relationship ".

Husain Haqqani, a former Pakistani ambassador In the United States, which today works as a fellow at the Hudson Institute, a Washington-based research group, he said in an interview that Pakistan had treated American diplomats with intense suspicion for a long time most spies, "because Pakistan's own espionage agency is so ubiquitous."

Last month, an American military attaché was prevented from leaving Pakistan after his vehicle hit a motorcycle and killed one of his drivers in Islamabad, an accident, which attracted a lot of attention in Pakistan.

Haroon Janjua from Islamabad and Gardiner Harris from Washington reported.


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