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Pakistan arrests US security contractor as rift with CIA deepens *LINK*

Friday 25 February 2011


ISI tells American agency to unmask all its covert operatives after arrest of Aaron DeHaven in Peshawar, over visa expiry

Pakistani authorities have arrested a US government security contractor amid a worsening spy agency row between the countries, with Pakistani intelligence calling on the Americans to "come clean" about its network of covert operatives in the country.

The arrest came at the start of the murder trial of another American held in Pakistan, the CIA agent Raymond Davis.

Peshawar police arrested Aaron DeHaven, a contractor who recently worked for the US embassy in Islamabad, saying that his visa had expired.

Little was known about DeHaven except that his firm, which also has offices in Afghanistan and Dubai, is staffed by retired US military and defence personnel who boast of direct experience in the "global war on terror".

It was unclear whether his arrest was linked to escalating tensions between the Inter-Services Intelligence and the CIA, triggered by the trial of Davis, who appeared in handcuffs at a brief court hearing in a Lahore jail.

The 36-year-old former special forces soldier, whose status as a spy was revealed by the Guardian, refused to sign a chargesheet presented to him by the prosecution, which says he murdered two men at a traffic junction on January 27.

Davis instead repeated his claim of diplomatic immunity – a claim supported by President Barack Obama, who called him "our diplomat".

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