Rearrest, prosecute Mumbai attack mastermind, US tells Pakistan

Washington: US-Pakistan ties will hit a new low if Islamabad fails to rearrest and prosecute a terrorist mastermind linked to 2008 Mumbai attacks, White House has warned.

Condemning a Pakistan court’s release of Hafiz Saeed from house arrest on Friday, White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders said it exposes Pakistan’s lack of commitment to fight international terrorism and belies the country’s claims that it will not provide sanctuary to terrorists on its soil.

Pakistan’s failure to charge Saeed for his crimes will have repercussions for bilateral relations and its global reputation, Sanders said.

Saeed is the co-founder of the banned Lashkar-e-Taiba group linked to the Mumbai attacks that left 168 people dead. US has designated him a terrorist and placed a $10 million reward for information leading to his arrest and conviction.

While Pakistan’s release of Saeed upset the US and India, Saeed’s spokesman Yahya Mujahid called it a “victory of truth.”

Although Saeed’s supporters claim he is a social activist running a charity, Jamaat-ud-Dawa (JuD), the organization is seen as a front group of LeT.