India for upping pressure on Pak
New Delhi, December 22:
India’s foreign minister today criticised the international reaction to last month’s attacks on Mumbai, saying pressure put on Pakistan by world leaders was inadequate.
Pranab Mukherjee said he wanted to see more results from US-led attempts to force Pakistan to co-operate with the probe into the attacks, which India blames on Pakistan-based militants.
“There has been some effort so far by the international community but this is not enough,” Mukherjee told a meeting of India’s ambassadors gathered in New Delhi to discuss the Mumbai siege.
Asked whether a military response to the attacks was being considered, Mukherjee said India would “explore all options” to push Pakistan on its promise to crack down on cross-border terrorism.
Mukherjee said India had “so far acted with utmost restraint” after gunmen killed 163 people in the 60-hour siege — but he added that India could not afford to stand back and rely on others to tackle Pakistan.
“While we continue to persuade the international community and Pakistan, we are also clear that ultimately it is we who have to deal with this problem,” he said.
“We expect Pakistan to do whatever it has committed,” said Mukherjee. “We want it to fulfill its promises, fulfill its commitments as a responsible member of the community of nations.” He said Pakistan’s response to the attacks demonstrated its “tendency to resort to a policy of denial” and warned that militants based in Pakistan continued “to threaten peace and stability in this region and beyond.”
Pakistan has said it would not hand over suspects in the Mumbai terror strikes and has rejected evidence that the gunmen were from Pakistan.
New Delhi blames the carnage on Lashkar-e-Taiba, a Pakistan-based militant group fighting in Jammu and Kashmir. Under pressure from the UN, Pakistan banned Jamaat-ud-Dawa, one of the country’s largest charities, which is accused of being a political front for LeT, which has already been banned by Pakistan, but India accuses Islamabad of not cracking down on the group, which has past links to ISI and Al-Qaeda.