Washington, Feb 23 (DPA) An American citizen held by Pakistani authorities in connection with a shooting incident last month is a security contractor for the CIA, US media reported Tuesday.
Raymond Davis was taken into custody following the shooting deaths Jan 27 of two Pakistanis in Lahore. Davis has said he acted in self-defence during an armed robbery attempt.
The US government has said Davis was an embassy employee, and should be immediately released on the grounds of diplomatic immunity. Davis has remained in detention and is facing charges in connection to the incident.
The New York Times and Washington Post reported Tuesday that Davis was actually a security contractor for the CIA operating out of a safe house in Lahore. Davis was working with a covert team conducting surveillance of militant groups, the newspapers reported, citing US officials.
Davis is a retired special forces soldier, who has worked for private security firms, including Blackwater Worldwide, which is now known as Xe Services, the newspapers reported.
Blackwater, which has been contracted by the US government to protect US personnel abroad, has been a source of controversy in Iraq and Afghanistan for alleged heavy handedness.
The Davis case caused increased tension between the US and Pakistan. The Pakistanis fear his release could provoke a public backlash in an already politically unstable environment.