Pakistan appeals against release of Mumbai attacks accused

ISLAMABAD - Pakistan’s government Monday appealed against last month’s court ruling that freed Hafiz Saeed, head of an Islamic charity suspected of being a front for a group accused of the Mumbai terrorist attacks, a Pakistani official said.

The radical cleric along with his associate was placed under house arrest in December after the United Nations banned his charity, Jamaat-ud-Dawa (JuD), as a front for the terrorist organization Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT).

The LeT is believed to be responsible for terrorist attacks in November in the Indian financial hub of Mumbai, which killed more than 170 people.

But the high court in eastern city of Lahore released him in early June saying there were insufficient grounds to detain him.

Pakistan’s Deputy Attorney General Shah Khawar told DPA that the federal government and government of Punjab Province have filed two separate appeals filed against the decision.

“I think we have enough evidence to stress our plea that Mr Hafiz Saeed is a security threat and should be detained therefore,” Khwar said.

India received the high court verdict with “disappointment,” and an Indian court last month issued an arrest warrant for Saeed for his alleged involvement in the four-day gun-and-bomb attacks in Mumbai on hotels, a cafe, hospital and Jewish centre.

Tensions escalated between the two nuclear-armed rivals after the Mumbai attacks to the point where India suspended the five-year-old peace process aimed at easing relations and solving contentious issues.

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