Britain blames Lashkar for
Mumbai, asks Pakistan to act
By Manish Chand and Muhammad Najeeb
Delhi/Islamabad, Dec 14 (IANS) British Prime Minister Gordon
Brown Sunday blamed Pakistan-based Laskhar-e-Taiba for the
Mumbai savagery and told Islamabad that the “time has come
for action” against terrorists.
an unscheduled visit to India and Pakistan in the wake of
the Mumbai terror attacks, Brown underlined in New Delhi that
“three-fourth of the terror plots” probed by his country had
links to Al Qaeda as well as Pakistan. Brown later flew to
stress on tough action came as Pakistan President Asif Ali
Zardari assured that his government was ready to "do
more" once India completes its investigation into the
Mumbai attacks and shares the information with his administration.
India remained unconvinced.
an election rally in Jammu and Kashmir's Khandroo town, Prime
Minister Manmohan Singh said India wanted “to normalise relations
with Pakistan” but asked Islamabad to do more to address New
Delhi's concerns on cross-border terror.
are some people in Pakistan who are always trying to launch
such attacks," the prime minister said.
met Manmohan Singh and Zardari in New Delhi and Islamabad
respectively and offered them help to combat terror and sought
permission for the British police to question suspects arrested
in both countries in connection with the Nov 26 Mumbai killings.
who India says came from Pakistan slaughtered over 170 people
from Nov 26 to 29. The dead included 26 foreigners, including
a Briton and two people with dual British-Indian nationality.
Pakistan has denied its involvement in the Mumbai massacre.
It has even challenged Indian claims that the only terrorist
caught alive in Mumbai is a Pakistani national.
international pressure on Pakistan to act against terror outfits
in that country, Brown backed India's accusation saying Britain
knows that the Lashkar was to blame for the Mumbai attacks
and stressed that Islamabad had “a great deal to answer for.”
group responsible for the attacks is LeT and they have a great
deal to answer for, and I hope to convey some of the views
of the Indian prime minister to the president of Pakistan,”
Brown told select journalists in New Delhi.
was asked if Pakistan was doing enough to crack down on terrorist
groups ranged against India.
know that some arrests have been made and some people have
been held even as we speak," said Brown, minutes before
flying to Pakistan.
his talks with Manmohan Singh, Brown underlined global solidarity
with India and offered help with forensic investigation as
well as assistance to improve airport security.
said Britain would be happy to cooperate with India to deal
with security issues at major sporting events like the Commonwealth
Games due in New Delhi in 2010. London holds the Olympics
a pointed message aimed at Pakistan, Brown stressed that the
international community had to ensure that there were “no
safe havens for terrorists and no hiding places for those
who finance terror attacks”.
Brown conveyed the same message to Zardari and his aides in
a new "pact against terror" to Islamabad, Brown
announced a 6 million pound grant for Pakistan to fight mounting
radicalization and told his interlocutors that "three-quarters
of the most serious terrorist plots investigated by the British
authorities have links to Al Qaeda in Pakistan".
time has come for action, not words," Brown said at a
joint press conference with Zardari in Islamabad.
said that it was up to India and Pakistan how they investigated
the problem but there "is a need for cooperation between
both the countries".
offered to expand the counter-terrorism assistance programme
to Pakistan to include assistance with bomb disposal, bomb
scanning equipment and airport security.
added that Zardari had assured him he would take further action
to clamp down on militants linked to the Mumbai attacks.
visit came on a day Pakistan charged that Indian warplanes
had violated its airspace, a claim which New Delhi quickly
denied. Zardari called it a technical intrusion and said the
Indian aircraft had "slightly entered" the Pakistani
continued to deny any link with the Mumbai terrorists.
I know is India is investigating the attacks and will share
information after they have completed the investigation,"
Zardari said to a question if his government would take action
against people involved in the Mumbai killings.
Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi reiterated that India
had provided no proof that the arrested terrorist, Mohammed
Amir Ajmal, or any of his nine colleagues killed were Pakistanis.
are not denying it, we are not accepting it. If you (India)
have any evidence, share this evidence with us", he said.
has also clarified that the welfare projects run by Jamaat-ud
Dawa, including hospitals, dispensaries and schools, would
not be shut down.