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December 03, 2008

India Demands Pakistan Turn Over Its 20 Most Wanted "Militatants"

A useless gesture:

India has served Pakistan with a demand to hand over 20 of its most feared criminals and militants, seeking co-operation with its neighbour rather than military confrontation in response to last week’s attacks on Mumbai.

Pranab Mukherjee, India’s foreign minister, said on Tuesday: “We have asked for the arrest and handover of those persons who are settled in Pakistan and who are fugitives of Indian law.

“Nobody is talking of military action [against Pakistan],” he said of the threat of a rapid deterioration of relations between the two nuclear armed rivals.

The comments were made ahead of a visit by Condoleezza Rice, US secretary of state, to New Delhi on Wednesday. Western diplomats believe Ms Rice’s meetings with senior Indian government figures will be far from easy.

One question that Indian leaders may well raise with Ms Rice is why the US expects India to take a measured and controlled response to the Mumbai attacks, given the US has had a policy for some time of launching direct military strikes against core members of al-Qaeda in Pakistan’s tribal areas.

...

The list includes Dawood Ibrahim, a formidable underworld don held responsible for the 1993 bomb attack on Mumbai; Masood Azhar, leader of a group suspected of attacking the Indian parliament in 2001; and Hafiz Mohammed Saeed, a university professor who founded Lashkar-e-Taiba.



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posted by Ace at 02:19 PM

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