Pakistan considers pulling out 4 embassy officials from Delhi

Pakistan High Commission staffer Mehm­ood Akhtar, who was was caught in an espionage ring in Delhi, was expelled from India after being declared persona non grata.

By: IANS | Islamabad | Updated: November 1, 2016 12:54 pm
Pakistani espionage case, Pak spy ring, Pak spy Shoaib, Pak spy sent to police custody, India news, latest news, indian express Pakistan High Commissioner Abdul Basit outside South Block on Thursday. (Express Photo: Renuka Puri)

Pakistan is considering pulling out from India four of its officials posted in the High Commission in New Delhi, days after Indian authorities declared one diplomat persona non grata. “This is under consideration. A final decision would be taken shortly,” a source at the Foreign Office told Pakistani paper Dawn on Monday.

The names of the four officials – Commercial Counsellor Syed Furrukh Habib and First Secretaries Khadim Huss­ain, Mudassir Cheema and Shahid Iqbal – were made public after Indian officials released to media a recorded statement of a High Commission staffer Mehm­ood Akhtar, who was expelled from India after being declared persona non grata.

Akhtar told Dawn news that he had given the statement under duress. “They took me to a police station after detaining me where I was forced to read out a written statement provided by them in which the names of the four officers were given and was told to state that they belonged to Pakistan’s intelligence services,” the former High Commission official, who returned to Islamabad last week, said.

Akhtar narrated how he was “manhandled and picked” from outside a zoo while on his way back from Nizamuddin shrine and taken to a Delhi police station, where he was coerced into recording a statement before being expelled from the country.

The incident has jeopardised the security of the officers and their families, besides restricting the normal diplomatic functioning of the high commission. Pakistan and India have in the past expelled each other’s diplomats and officials due to their tense relationship, but it is one of those rare occasions where one of the countries took the extreme step of revealing the identities of officers. Pakistani officials believe that India did this on purpose to heighten the tensions.

“We consider it as a serious breach of diplomatic norms. The Indian move has complicated the already tense situation and threatened the lives of our diplomatic staff,” a Pakistani official said, adding it was a “deliberate and provocative action”.

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  1. A
    Nov 1, 2016 at 11:06 am
    Its a matter of shame for a big country that a small country which is 8 times smaller in size 10 times smaller in potion giving a tough time
    1. K
      Kt govindan
      Nov 1, 2016 at 7:22 am
      As far as the current highcommissioner at the helm of affair things will as usual because it is he the kingpin. The hurriat, their spoce in delhi some political leaders are all in the list of this man. The diplomatic freedom is misusing. Sadly some opposition leaders are still faith in this man.
      1. A
        Nov 1, 2016 at 9:02 am
        As long as Pak goes on supporting terrorists, then finally, terrorists alone runs stan not even army, ISI. Why stan citizens, people are tolerating for so long these crooked people even at the cost of their future and their children future is not understandable.
        1. A
          Nov 1, 2016 at 9:50 am
          Better to pull out before we catch them red handed in other acts of espionage
          1. A
            Nov 1, 2016 at 9:11 am
            Chances of Peaceful talk between stan and India is becoming more tough than ever before.It is time for both countries to restrain from spoiling relation in the moment of excitements and continuous firing along with LOC. Wisdom must prevail both in the interest of peace and harmony among the people of both countries.
            1. R
              Nov 1, 2016 at 10:46 am
              Why even have an emby with this country? What's the point? No trade, no real relations, there are lives lost on the border - seriously, the point of establishing relations to to meet, understand and live together. The other side is a crazy, non-democratic country which is ruled by their military! What emby? What for? Of course they will use it to spy because they cannot use it for anything else!
              1. A
                Nov 1, 2016 at 7:14 am
                OH ! GET OUT ! WE DON"T NEED YOU !!!
                1. S
                  Nov 1, 2016 at 10:19 am
                  Shut Down Indian Emby in;br/gt;How can we diplomatically isolate stan by running Embies?
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