Srinagar: In the aftermath of the 2008 Mumbai terror attacks, the US had categorically told Pakistan to dismantle terror infrastructure on its soil and take action against LeT founder Hafiz Saeed for his alleged involvement in the attacks, a US diplomatic cable released by Wikileaks has revealed.
“In his introductory meeting with Pakistan’s High Commissioner to India Shahid Malik (on) 25 August (2009), Ambassador (Timothy) Roemer stressed the importance of bringing to justice the perpetrators of the Mumbai terrorist attacks and dismantling terror groups,” the US diplomatic cable released last week said.
Roemer, in the 2009 cable, specifically emphasised the importance of acting on the evidence involving Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) founder Hafiz Muhammad Saeed.
Malik responded by characterising the latest dossier on Hafiz Saeed handed over by New Delhi to Islamabad as a “rehash” of existing evidence.
The Pakistani High Commissioner had sought US help in resumption of the dialogue process with India as Malik claimed that the Sharm el Shaikh joint statement of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and his Pakistan counterpart Yusuf Raza Gilani had delinked talks from action against terrorism.
“Malik repeatedly emphasised that a return to the dialogue process was Pakistan’s priority in its relationship with India. Malik exhaustively recounted efforts by the Government of Pakistan to promote dialogue with India since the bombing of the Indian Embassy in Kabul last July,” the cable said.
However, the US ambassador made it clear to Malik that dialogue was no substitute for action against terrorist groups operating out of Pakistani soil, it said.
Ambassador Roemer underscored the perspective of the US and encouraged more concrete help from Pakistan’s military and intelligence institutions to dismantle terror networks and prosecute terrorists.
“Recalling that the scores of victims of the Mumbai attacks included six Americans, he (Roemer) underscored that bringing the perpetrators to justice was a priority not just in Delhi but also in Washington. The Ambassador stressed the importance of dismantling LeT and preventing another Mumbai-style attack from taking place,” the cable said.
“At the same time, we will encourage dialogue. We can encourage dialogue and diplomacy, but we also must see activity and results (against terrorism),” Roemer told Malik.