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Pakistan restricts Hizbul Mujahideen
May 20, 2003 13:23 IST
Pakistan has 'restricted' the Hizbul Mujahideen and said the outfit's leaders, including its chief Syed Salahuddin, have been barred from entering Pakistan-occupied Kashmir.
But there is no restriction on the movements of its leaders outside PoK, Interior Minister Faisel Saleh Hayat said in Islamabad on Tuesday.
"We cannot ban Hizbul Mujahideen. The ban cannot be applicable because it is not a Pakistan based organisation," he clarified after earlier reports had said that Pakistan banned the outfit. "They (Hizb) are not allowed to regroup as a militant force obviously. Use of militancy is totally out of question, we will not allow them to use our soil to propagate any damaging propaganda or physical activity, which could endanger the life or pose a security threat to Pakistan or any of its neighbours."
The Pakistan government has already banned the entry of Lashkar-e-Tayiba and Jaish-e-Mohammed leaders into PoK.
The restriction on the activities of militant outfits follow a series of statements by Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee that Pakistan should crack down on terrorist groups and destroy their camps to create conducive atmosphere for talks.