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Proof of involvement handed over to Pakistan, says Mukherjee

January 05, 2009 11:48 IST
Last Updated: January 05, 2009 12:51 IST


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Stepping up its diplomatic offensive, India on Monday handed over to Pakistan evidence linking that country to the Mumbai terrorist attacks and prepared to share the proof with the world community with the expectation that Islamabad [Images] would cooperate in punishing the culprits.

Describing the Mumbai [Images] attacks as an "unpardonable crime", India asked Pakistan to promptly follow up on the evidence by holding further probe there and share the results with New Delhi [Images] so that the guilty are brought to justice.

External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee [Images] said he had also written to his counterparts around the globe, giving details of the Mumbai terrorist attacks, and hoped that the "world will unite" in ensuring an end to cross-border terrorism faced by India.

"We have today handed over to Pakistan evidence of the links with elements in Pakistan of the terrorists who attacked Mumbai on November 26, 2008," Mukherjee told reporters in New Delhi.

His statement came soon after Foreign Secretary Shiv Shankar Menon summoned Pakistan High Commissioner Shahid Malik to hand over the dossier, which includes confession of Ajmal Amir Kasab [Images], the lone Pakistani terrorist held during the Mumbai attacks, and other material.

"What happened in Mumbai was an unpardonable crime," Mukherjee said and asked Pakistan to implement the bilateral commitments it has made at the highest levels to India and "practice its international obligations".

The external affairs ministry said "this material is linked to elements in Pakistan" and "it is our expectation that the government of Pakistan will promptly undertake further investigations in Pakistan and share the results with us so as to bring the perpetrators to justice."

The evidence includes the confession of Ajmal Amir Kasab, the lone Pakistani terrorist held during the Mumbai terror strikes, records of GPS and satellite phones used by the attackers and transcript of conversations between the attackers and their handlers in Pakistan during the three-day gun-battle.

It also includes details about weapons and other articles recovered from the 10 Lashkar e Tayiba terrorists who came from Karachi and attacked Mumbai on November 26 last year.

"We are also briefing all our friendly countries," the external affairs minister said.

"I have written to my counterparts around the world giving them details of the events in Mumbai and describing in some detail the progress that we have made in our investigations and the evidence that we have collected," Mukherjee said.

Home Minister P Chidambaram [Images] will travel to the United States, most likely tomorrow, to share evidence on the Mumbai attacks as part of efforts to build pressure on Pakistan.

The external affairs ministry will also be briefing all heads of missions based in New Delhi by tomorrow. Indian ambassadors and high commissioners will be doing the same in their host countries, he said.

"It is my hope that the world will unite to achieve the goal of eliminating the threat of such terrorism," Mukherjee said.

India hoped that Pakistan will implement its "bilateral, multilateral and international obligations to prevent terrorism in any manner from the territory under its control".



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