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26/11 attack carried out by Pak-based terror group: Pakistan ex-NSA

Pakistan’s Former National Security Advisor (NSA) Maj Gen Mahmud Ali Durrani on Monday negated the importance of Jamat-ud Dawa’s chief Hafiz Saeed for the establishment in Islamabad.

Published: 06th March 2017 02:34 PM  |   Last Updated: 06th March 2017 06:25 PM   |  A+A-

Children light candles in tribute to the victims of 26/11, in Surat. PTI

By Express News Service

NEW DELHI: Pakistan’s Former National Security Advisor (NSA) Maj Gen Mahmud Ali Durrani on Monday negated the importance of Jamat-ud Dawa’s chief Hafiz Saeed for the establishment in Islamabad and hoped that he will be punished. He also termed the 2008 Mumbai terror attack as a classic case of “cross-border” terrorism.

Maj Gen Durrani was speaking at the 9th Asian Security Conference at the Institute of Defense Studies and Analyses (IDSA) as he made the remarks. Despite admitting that the 26/11 terror attack had their roots in Pakistan, the former NSA said that the incident was not state-sponsored.

“He is of no use to Pakistan, I hope he is punished,” Durrani said, when asked what use is Hafiz Saeed is for Pakistan. India holds Lashkar-e-toiba and Hafiz Saeed responsible for orchestrating the dastardly attack where 10 armed terrorists created mayhem in the commercial capital of the country. Last month Pakistan, after years of dilly-dallying, had listed Hafiz Saeed under the Anti-Terrorist Act. He already carries a $ 10 million US bounty on his head.  India had hailed it as a ‘logical’ first step in ridding the region of the “twin menaces of terrorism and violent extremism”.

Durrani also expressed his regret for the “unfortunate attack” and denied that it was the handiwork of Pakistan’s intelligence agency.  “I can say with authority no one on the ISI - Pakistan's intelligence agency - or establishment was aware of the plan to strike in India….I felt very bad, the moment this (terror attack) happened. I called up Narayanan (then Indian NSA); asked him if he allowed us, we would send 2-3 investigators to help to reach the root cause, but mistrust prevailed,” Durrani added.

The former NSA had lost his job with the government after he accepted involvement of Pakistan-based non-state actors in the Mumbai terror attack.

However, Pakistan also came under attack from the visiting Afghanistan NSA Muhmmad Hanif Atmar, who obliquely hinted at Pakistan as he said his country was victim of a terrorist war and an “undeclared state to state war”. He also urged the international community to at least take action against individuals if it was not feasible to designate states.



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