US wants Headley to be brought to justice: Roemer

Last Updated: Thursday, February 18, 2010 - 18:24

Bangalore: Acknowledging that India and
America share a "common enemy" in terror groups, the US on Thursday
said it wants to bring American terror suspect David Headley,
charged in the Mumbai attack, to justice and make sure he pays
a "severe penalty".

The US also said it will track people like Headley and
other "blood thirsty" terrorists wherever they go to bring
them to justice. Headley is currently in US custody.

The two countries shared a common perspective of the
threat from terror groups and were working closely to enhance
security and safety, US Ambassador Timothy Roemer said.

"They (terrorists) can strike very quickly in a
blood-thirsty way into any part of the globe and this is
something that our President and your Prime Minister is taking
very seriously", he told reporters.

On Headley, who faces conspiracy charge in connection
with 26/11, Roemer said, "Headley may well be responsible for
canvassing, tracking information to pass on to attackers of
Mumbai blast. This is the sort of the thing that the US is
extremely serious about".

"We want, along with Indian people and Indian
government, to bring him to justice and make sure he pays a
severe penalty for what he has done", Roemer said.

"We want Headley to cooperate. We want him to continue
giving us valuable information", he said, adding currently the
process of investigation was on and was not being interrupted.
India has been pressing the US to give it access to the
Pakistani-American Lashkar-e-Taiba(LeT) operative for
interrogation.

"The US will track people like Headley and other blood
thirsty terrorists wherever they go to bring them to justice",
he asserted.

Roemer said both India and US were cooperating in
terms of collecting, sharing and analysing information in
connection with anti-terrorism efforts.

The Indian Home Minister, he said, had "a very
successful visit" to US recently, looking at labs working on
anti-terrorism, meeting the New York Police and trying to find
out the best practices in that country.

Roemer reiterated that the US was ready to provide
any assistance in the Pune blast investigation if India sought
it. "We would provide any assistance we could."

"We will do it only if asked. We respect the process.
Going forward, when the government wants or sees a need and
asks for any technical assistance, we as a government are
happy to provide it", he said.

Describing the Pune blast, which claimed 11 lives as
tragic, he said he had immediately called up Home Minister P
Chidambaram and offered the American peoples` condolences.

Describing Indo-US relationship as a growing strategic
relationship, he said there were various areas of opportunities
for it to grow, including fighting piracy, maritime, defence
exercises, weapon procurement and humanitarian causes.

"It is upto the Indian government where they want to take
this relationship", he said.

"There is no limit to this relationship", he said adding
"that does not mean there are agreements on every issue and no
country or no ally has it" (total agreement).

PTI



First Published: Thursday, February 18, 2010 - 18:24

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