US rejects report regarding its envoy asking Pak to issue prohibited arms license

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Islamabad, Sep.20 (ANI): The United States has rejected media reports that its envoy to Pakistan, Anne Patterson, had asked the PPP-led government to issue prohibited fire arms license to a private security company.

US embassy spokesman Richard Snelisry, while confirming that the US has hired the private security company, Inter-Risk, to provide security to the US interests in Pakistan, denied reports which said that Patterson had written a letter to Interior Minister Rehman Malik, asking him to grant prohibited bore licenses to Inter-Risk.

When asked whether the US embassy was importing prohibited sophisticated weapons on behalf of Inter Risk, Snelisry said: "If we did that, we would have done it with the complete knowledge of the Government of Pakistan."

"There is nothing secret to what we are doing here," The News quoted him, as saying.

It may be noted that Inter-Risk is a local partner of the US based DynCorp in Pakistan.

Islamabad Police on Saturday raided Inter-Risk's office and recovered 61 firearms.

The police also detained two persons from the office premises of the company have registered a case of fraud against the company.

The early morning raid came after reports surfaced that Pakistani authorities have issued 86 licenses for prohibited weapons to a security company which has been hired by the US embassy.

Interior Ministry sources revealed that the licenses were issued to Inter Risk following Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani's approval.

US Ambassador Anne Patterson had held meetings with Gilani and the Interior Advisor Rehman Malik for approval of the licenses, sources said.

According to a private television channel, the highly sophisticated weapons have been imported from the US and each of them cost about 800,000 rupees.

The deal was finalized in April itself, sources added. (ANI)

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