US denies suspending all bilateral contacts with Pakistan on Raymond Davis issue

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Washington, Feb 9(ANI): The United States has denied reports that it has put all bilateral contacts with Pakistan on hold until Islamabad releases double murder-accused US diplomat Raymond Davis.

"We continue contact with Pakistan to express the importance of resolving the case of a U.S. diplomat in accordance with international law," US Assistant Secretary of State for Public Affairs Philip J. Crowley wrote on micro-blogging site Twitter.

Crowley's tweet came hours after media reports that US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton had cancelled a meeting last weekend with Pakistani Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi at an international security conference in Munich to protest the arrested US diplomat's detention.

It was also reported that the dispute could affect three major events planned this year- President Asif Ali Zardari's visit to Washington, the next round of US-Pakistan strategic dialogue and the trilateral talks involving Pakistan, Afghanistan and the United States later this month.

In a press briefing also, when asked whether there had been 'any slowdown on sort of contacts at a lower level, because this issue remains unresolved,' Crowley said the United States "continues to have contacts" with the Pakistan Government.

"We continue to express to them the importance of resolving this. And we continue to express to them the fact that our U.S. diplomat has diplomatic immunity and should be released," he added.

Crowley pointed out that "Secretary had a discussion with General Kayani on the margins of the Munich Security Conference. Ambassador Munter talked to President Zardari today. The Secretary talked to President Zardari last week. So we continue to have contacts with our Pakistani counterparts, and we continue to emphasize the importance of resolving this case." (ANI)

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