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US calls for Hafiz Saeed to be held accountable for Mumbai terror attacks

On Wednesday, Alice Wells, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of US for South and Central Asian Affairs had termed the conviction of 26/11 Mumbai terror attack mastermind Hafiz Saeed as an "important step forward" towards holding terrorist organisation LeT "accountable for its crimes".

India TV News Desk India TV News Desk
New Delhi Updated on: February 14, 2020 7:30 IST
Hafiz Saeed
Image Source : AP

US calls for Hafiz Saeed to be held accountable for Mumbai terror attacks

The United States on Thursday called for Mumbai terror attacks mastermind Hafiz Saeed to be held accountable for his involvement in the planning of "numerous acts of terrorism, including 2008 Mumbai attacks". Commenting on the demand, US State Department spokesperson said Hafiz Saeed's conviction on terror financing is a step towards curtailing the operation of a terrorist group that threatens peace and stability in South Asia. 

"We continue to call for Hafiz Saeed to be held accountable for his involvement in the planning of numerous acts of terrorism, including 2008 Mumbai attacks that killed 166 innocent people, including 6 Americans," he said. 

"We urge Pakistan to continue to take appropriate legal action against individuals who commit acts of terrorism, raise funds for, or advocate for terrorism," the official said.

On Wednesday, Alice Wells, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of US for South and Central Asian Affairs had termed the conviction of 26/11 Mumbai terror attack mastermind Hafiz Saeed as an "important step forward" towards holding terrorist organisation LeT "accountable for its crimes".

"Today's conviction of Hafiz Saeed and his associate is an important step forward - both toward holding LeT accountable for its crimes and for #Pakistan in meeting its international commitments to combat terrorist financing," she tweeted.

"And as @ImranKhanPTI has said, it is in the interest of #Pakistan's future that it not allow non-state actors to operate from its soil," she said in another tweet.

An anti-terrorism court in Lahore, Pakistan on Wednesday sentenced Mumbai terror attack mastermind and chief of the banned Jamaat-ud -Dawa (JuD) Hafiz Saeed to five-and-a-half years in prison each in two terror financing cases.

Pakistan based Dawn reported that he was slapped with a prison sentence of five-and-a-half years and a fine of Rs15,000 in each case and the sentences of both cases will run concurrently.

Meanwhile, India on Thursday expressed scepticism over the efficacy of the conviction of Hafiz Saeed, the founder and patron of the banned terror outfit Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT), by a Pakistani court ahead of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) plenary meeting. 

According to top official sources, the government views the conviction as a "part of a long-pending international obligation of Pakistan to put an end to support for terrorism". 

However, the government has taken note of the fact that the decision has been made on the eve of the FATF plenary meeting. Hence the government is not sure about the "efficacy of this decision," a source said.

Also Read | India sceptic over efficacy of Hafiz Saeed's conviction by Pakistan

Also Read | Hafiz Saeed convicted in terror financing cases, sentenced to 5 years in jail​

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