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Pakistan: No confession in Mumbai probe

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    Pakistan says no confession in Mumbai probe 01/01/09 http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20090101/wl_asia_afp/indiaattackspakistanp robe ISLAMABAD (AFP) – Pakistan
    Message 1 of 1 , Jan 5, 2009
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      Pakistan says no confession in Mumbai probe
      01/01/09
      http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20090101/wl_asia_afp/indiaattackspakistanp
      robe


      ISLAMABAD (AFP) – Pakistan denied reports Thursday that a militant
      arrested last month had confessed to involvement in the Mumbai
      attacks, saying no conclusions could be made until investigations are
      complete.

      The Wall Street Journal reported Wednesday, citing unnamed officials,
      that authorities had obtained a confession from a key leader of the
      banned militant group Lashkar-e-Taiba, which India has blamed for the
      carnage in Mumbai.

      The suspect, Zarar Shah, allegedly told investigators he had played a
      key role in the planning of the deadly attacks that left 172 dead --
      a story the unnamed security official said was backed up by US
      intercepts of phone calls.

      But Pakistani interior ministry spokesman Shahidullah Baig told
      AFP: "We have no such information. We don't accept that report."

      Pakistani police arrested Shah and another key LeT operative, Zaki-ur-
      Rehman Lakhvi, in the wake of the attacks as part of a series of
      raids against the Islamic charity Jamaat-ud-Dawa, widely seen as
      LeT's political wing.

      Their arrests came after the United Nations Security Council
      classified Jamaat-ud-Dawa as a terrorist organisation, obliging UN
      member states to freeze its assets and leading Islamabad to arrest
      several senior figures.

      A senior government official told AFP Thursday that no conclusions
      could be drawn from Pakistan's investigations until India shares key
      evidence with Islamabad about the attacks.

      The official, who asked not to be named, added that New Delhi has
      stated that its probe is ongoing.

      Indian media reports have said that Lakhvi chose the team of 10
      gunmen that perpetrated the attacks, while Shah allegedly arranged
      SIM cards and satellite phones used in the November 26-29 siege on
      India's financial capital.

      "When asked about the outcome of Pakistan's own investigation into
      the Mumbai attacks, foreign ministry spokesman Mohammad Sadiq
      said: "We are currently engaged in the process of our own
      investigation".

      He added:"We also await evidence from India to enable our own
      investigations to make progress."

      ===

      India hopes Pakistan will hand over Mumbai masterminds
      By Jawed Naqvi
      http://www.dawn.com/cgi-bin/dina.pl?file=top8.htm&date=20090104


      NEW DELHI, Jan 3: Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh appealed to
      Pakistan on Saturday to have the "sense to root out terrorism from
      its soil" and also hoped that Islamabad would extradite the
      masterminds of the Mumbai attacks that New Delhi says have found
      shelter across the border.

      "We are committed to rooting out terrorism and we sincerely hope that
      better sense will prevail with Pakistan," Dr Singh told journalists
      in the northeastern town of Shillong.

      To keep the pressure on Islamabad to bring the alleged fugitives to
      book,

      Indian Home Minister P. Chidambaram said he was planning to visit
      Washington within a week, reportedly with "proof" of Pakistan's
      culpability in Mumbai's terror attacks. He is expected to meet senior
      security officials and key advisers to the Obama transition team.

      "It (Pakistan) has to take action on the demand from all civilised
      countries that the perpetrators (of Mumbai attacks) will be brought
      to book," Dr Singh said at a news conference after inaugurating a
      science conference in Shillong. "We hope that these criminals will be
      handed over to us to face trial."

      The prime minister also hoped that the new government in Bangladesh
      would not allow its territory to be used for terrorist acts against
      India, especially in the northeast.

      "The growing menace of terrorism and Naxalism is a cause of worry.
      The government will not compromise with terrorism," Dr Singh
      said. "There were some initial setbacks, but we will overcome them.
      The government will go to any extent to root out terrorism from the
      country."

      Meanwhile, Press Trust of India said as part of efforts "to drum up
      international pressure for nailing Islamabad's lies", Mr Chidambaram
      would travel to Washington next week "armed with evidence about
      involvement of Pakistan-based terrorists in the Mumbai attacks".

      "I will be going to the US next week. The dates are being finalised,"
      PTI quoted Mr Chidambaram as saying.

      Asked about his mission, he said the Indian foreign ministry has
      prepared dossiers on evidence relating to Mumbai attacks and he would
      discuss them with his interlocutors in Washington. Details are being
      finalised, Mr Chidambaram said.

      PTI said Mr Chidambaram is expected to meet US Homeland Security
      Secretary Michael Chertoff and possibly Secretary of State
      Condoleezza Rice. A meeting with members of transition team of
      President-elect Barack Obama is also likely.

      "Chidambaram's discussions with American leaders could cover a broad
      ambit, including the steps taken by the Bush Administration in the
      aftermath of 9/11 attacks after a lot of critical self-appraisal,"
      PTI said.

      US ambassador to India David C. Mulford on Saturday met Mr
      Chidambaram, apparently to tie up details regarding his visit.

      Indian Foreign Minister Pranab Mukherjee has said India will share
      evidence regarding the role of Pakistan-based elements with the world
      community, which he feels should do more to ensure that perpetrators
      of the Mumbai attacks are brought to justice.

      "The evidence, the Indian government has put together, includes the
      confession of the lone Lashkar-e-Taiba terrorist held in Mumbai
      terror attack, Mr Ajmal Amir Kasab," PTI said. "The evidence will
      mostly include

      Kasab's confession to the police wherein he has given details of how
      he became a motivated terrorist of Lashkar-e-Taiba from a normal
      youth of Faridkot in Pakistan's Punjab province."

      Also included in the dossier are records of logbook recovered from
      the vessel in which the 10 terrorists are alleged to have come from
      Karachi, records of satellite phone used by the attackers and
      transcript of conversations between the attackers and their handlers
      in Pakistan, sources told PTI.

      The dossier also includes the corroborative evidence tracking the
      journey of the attackers from Karachi to Mumbai, they said.

      PTI said investigators have found evidence to show that the
      terrorists, who struck at the Taj Hotel, Trident Hotel and Nariman
      House on November 26, were in touch with their handlers in Karachi
      even while their three-day engagement with security forces was on.

      The evidence will be shared with Pakistan along with the United
      States, Britain, China and other countries that have influence on
      Islamabad, PTI said.

      Officers from the US Federal Bureau of Investigation have already
      questioned Mr Kasab, the lone surviving Lashkar-e-Taiba militant
      involved in the November 26 strikes, to ascertain his role and those
      of his handlers in Pakistan.

      *********************************************************************

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