Pakistan investigating Saeed over Mumbai attacks

Pakistan said on Saturday it was investigating an charity leader over last year's Mumbai attack.

Pakistan investigating Saeed over Mumbai attacks

Pakistan said on Saturday it was investigating an charity leader over last year's Mumbai attack, but said he would be arrested only after concrete evidence was found against him.

India pressures Pakistan to prosecute Hafiz Mohammad Saeed, founder of the Lashkar-e-Taiba, before it resumes a peace process broken off after last November's attack that killed 166 people.

"Hafiz Saeed is being investigated. He has been included in the investigation," Interior Minister Rehman Malik told reporters.

Pakistani police raised the possibility of arresting Saeed on Friday by saying they had lodged two complaints against him for delivering a speech on jihad and appealing for funds for his charity, Jammat-ud-Dawa banned afer Indian pressure despite protests by thousands of poor people who say they live with the charity's aids.

Malik said Saeed would be arrested after availability of solid evidence against him.

"I assure my Indian counterpart that if there was evidence against (him) during our investigation, I assure you he will not get out of clutches of law. We will take action."

Pakistan and India have held three bilateral meetings on the sidelines of international gatherings since June but New Delhi insists that Pakistan take forceful action against Saeed and other suspects before it resumes formal talks under the peace process launched in 2004.

Pakistan detained Saeed in December after a U.N. Security Council resolution put him and his charity on a list of people and organisations alegedly linking al Qaeda.

But a court released him in June on grounds of insufficient evidence, prompting the Pakistani government to appeal at the Supreme Court for his re-arrest. The case is pending.

Pakistan has acknowledged that the Mumbai attack was plotted and partly launched from its soil and has been holding a trial of seven suspects behind closed doors in a jail in Rawalpindi, the garrison town next to Islamabad.

The court adjourned the case until Sept. 24 after hearing the case on Saturday.

Malik said the court is expected to frame charges against the suspects at the next hearing.

Reuters
Last Mod: 20 Eylül 2009, 15:19
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