Sunday, February 15, 2009
India Presses Pakistan to Do More on Terror!
India Presses Pakistan to Do More on Terror
By SOMINI SENGUPTA, New York Times, February 13, 2009
NEW DELHI — India on Friday welcomed Pakistan’s admission that the Mumbai terrorist attacks were planned in part on its soil but pressed the government in Islamabad to “act effectively against the license that terrorist groups enjoy in its territory.”
The fuller Indian response was a signal of the opportunity and challenge that awaits Richard C. Holbrooke, the American special representative, who leaves Afghanistan for India on Sunday.
Pakistan on Thursday announced it was holding six people in connection with the attacks, including one it described as the ringleader, and it hit the ball back into India’s court by asking for more information, including how the attackers procured cellphone chips and the DNA samples of nine gunmen who were killed. The sole survivor, Ajmal Kasab, a Pakistani, remains in Indian custody.
On Friday, the Indian foreign minister, Pranab Mukherjee, described Pakistan’s announcement as “positive” and said India would “examine” its request for information. But he made it equally clear that it was not enough.
“We will continue to review the situation, including Pakistan’s responses, and will take further steps that we deem necessary in order to protect our people,” Mr. Mukherjee said in Parliament. “The threat of terrorism from Pakistan has emerged as a global menace and cancer. The major onus of responsibility to eliminate this threat rests on the government of Pakistan.”
India’s response reflects its own need to balance domestic pressures as national elections approach with the need to lower tensions with its rival and neighbor. The United States sees the heightened tensions between India and Pakistan as a potential stumbling block to its efforts to leverage Pakistani cooperation in quashing the Taliban along the Pakistan-Afghanistan border.
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Cartoon: By Zahoor, Daily Times, February 15, 2009
at 2:09 AM