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Feb 11, 2011 1:25 PM by Associated Press (CM)

US calls for release of American held in Pakistan

LAHORE, Pakistan (AP) - A top U.S. diplomat in Pakistan is calling for the immediate release of an American held in the shooting deaths of two Pakistanis.

Carmela Conroy, the U.S. consul general in the eastern city of Lahore, insisted in a public statement Friday night that the American has diplomatic immunity and was acting in self-defense against robbers.

Earlier Friday, Pakistani police said the American, identified as Raymond Allen Davis, carried out a "cold-blooded murder" and said their investigation indicated no self-defense was involved.

The dispute over Davis' fate has become a major point of confrontation between the two countries, whose partnership is considered key to ending the war in Afghanistan.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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