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No proof against Saeed in 26/11 attacks: Pak

By Rezaul H in Laskar in Islamabad
July 28, 2009 10:50 IST
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Pakistan has said it cannot arrest outlawed Jamaat-ud-Dawah chief Hafiz Mohammad Saeed, linked by India to the Mumbai terror attacks, since there is no proof of his involvement in the 26/11 assault.

Saeed will not be arrested merely on the basis of statements linking him to the attacks and the Indian government has been asked to provide proof of his involvement in any misdeeds, Pakistan's Interior Minister Rehman Malik has said.

"We do not have any proof against Hafiz Saeed," Malik told Geo News channel in an interview.

"We have demanded and we are demanding from India that if you have proof, give (it to) us, but do not do propaganda. I assure we will take action. But just on hearsay we cannot arrest our citizen," he said.

"If New Delhi wants some credible action, it needs to provide substantiated evidence," he added.

Malik said Pakistan had also sought information from India about Indian citizens who were allegedly involved in the Mumbai attacks. He claimed Indians were equally involved in the incident.

He said India would have to provide information on how the attackers travelled to Mumbai by boat without being detected and who refuelled their boat at sea.

Saeed was placed under house arrest in December last year after the United Nations Security Council declared the JuD a front for the banned Lashker-e-Tayiba.

Saeed was freed from detention on the orders of the Lahore High Court on June 2. The federal and Punjab governments challenged his release in the Supreme Court earlier this month.

However, the Punjab provincial government has said it could withdraw from the appeal as the federal government had not provided sufficient evidence against Saeed.

Five LeT operatives, including operations commander Zakiur Rehman Lakhvi, arrested by Pakistani security agencies are currently facing trial in an anti-terror court for alleged involvement in the Mumbai attacks.

Referring to the inclusion of Pakistan's concerns about alleged Indian interference in Balochistan in the joint declaration issued after the recent meeting between Pakistan Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani and his Indian counterpart Manmohan Singh, Malik said evidence in this regard will be disclosed at international forums at the appropriate time.

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Rezaul H in Laskar in Islamabad
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