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US says wants to see accountability from Pakistan on 26/11, but rules out sanctions

India has long asked Pakistan to bring the perpetrators of the 26/11 Mumbai attacks to justice but Islamabad has claimed that the evidence provided by New Delhi is not sufficient.


US says wants to see accountability from Pakistan on 26/11, but rules out sanctions

Washington: A day after Prime Minister Narendra Modi accused Pakistan of spreading terror, the US on Tuesday reiterated that it wants accountability from Islamabad on the 2008 Mumbai terror attacks that claimed 166 lives.

However, the US ruled out sanctions on the South Asian country for failing to weed out terrorists.

"We want to see accountability and justice in the case of the Mumbai attacks... there were American citizens who lost their lives in those attacks," US State Department deputy spokesperson Mark Toner said in a daily press briefing on Monday.

Toner made the remarks in response to a question about Secretary of State John Kerry's mentioning about US' efforts to bring to justice the perpetrators behind the attacks in which 10 terrorists targeted numerous sites in Mumbai.

Kerry was in New Delhi to attend the Second India-US Strategic and Commercial Dialogue on August 30.

According to Toner, the US has "long encouraged and pushed for greater counter-terrorism cooperation and the sharing of intelligence between India and Pakistan" in regards with the attacks, believed to be carried out by Pakistan-based terrorist organisation Lashkar-e-Toiba.

 

"That continues; those efforts continue. As I said, we want to see full accountability for these terrible attacks."

However, Toner also said the US was not considering sanctions on Islamabad and that Washington had "very frank conversations with Pakistan... about the need to take more efforts on all the terrorist groups... operating from within Pakistani soil".

"Well, again, you're asking me -- and the question was whether we're looking at sanctioning Pakistan. No... we're working with Pakistan, we're making our concerns clear that they need to go after all the terrorist groups," he said.

"We have seen some efforts to make progress in that regard. We're going to continue to have those conversations with them as we move forward," Toner said.

Responding to a question regarding the need to impose sanctions on Pakistan, Toner said: "I don't think we're even at that point. We continue to have... conversations with the highest level of the government of Pakistan. And our basic point in all of these conversations is that Pakistan must target all militant groups, including those that target Pakistan's neighbours, and eliminate all safe havens."

"But the suggestion of any kind of sanctions, we're not there," he added.

The deputy spokesman was responding to a question about former US Ambassador to the UN and Afghanistan Zalmay Khalilzad's statement that since Pakistan is not taking enough action against these terrorist networks, the US should consider taking some kind of sanctions against Pakistan.

According to Toner, Pakistan had assured the US of their intentions to target all the militant groups on its soil.

"We're going to continue to work with them to increase those efforts and apply more pressure on these groups," he said.

On Monday, PM Modi accused Pakistan of spreading terror and using terrorism as an instrument of state policy.

 

Addressing G20 leaders, the Indian leader urged them to "isolate and sanction supporters of terrorism".

At the two-day summit held in the eastern Chinese city of Hangzhou, India raised the issue of terrorism at various sessions.

Modi told Chinese President XI Jinping how the scourge of terrorism was affecting the region.

"There are some nations that use it as an instrument of state policy. One single nation in South Asia is spreading agents of terror in our region," he said, without naming Pakistan.

The four-day attacks in Mumbai starting from November 26, 2008, were carried out by 10 terrorists of the Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Toiba outfit.

One of them, Ajmal Kasab, was captured and put to death under the Indian justice system while the other nine terrorists were killed by security forces.

The trial has been underway in Pakistan for more than six years.

The other six suspects are in Adiala Jail in Rawalpindi.

India has long asked Pakistan to bring the perpetrators of the 26/11 Mumbai attacks to justice but Islamabad has claimed that the evidence provided by New Delhi is not sufficient.

(With Agency inputs)

From Zee News

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