US, India urge Pakistan to prosecute Hafiz Saeed 'to the fullest'

Terrorist Hafiz Saeed should be prosecuted to 'fullest extent of law': US

US Department of State spokesperson Heather Nauert called upon Pakistan for an action against Hafiz Saeed 'to the fullest extent of the law'.

Reacting strongly to Abbasi's comments, Nauert stated that Washington has conveyed its concern to Islamabad as the U.S. believes Saeed should be prosecuted.

Pakistan Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi had earlier decided not to prosecute Saeed, referring to him as "Sahib" in an interview to Geo News earlier this week.

Hafiz Saeed, who was in November set free from a 300-day-long house arrest, has been repeatedly accused by the USA and India of masterminding the 2008 attacks on the Indian financial capital that killed 166 people.

The US also desires the Lashkar-e-Taiba be labelled a terrorist organisation internationally.

Pakistan has been made aware of the US' reservations, she added. "Pakistan has never taken unilateral action, we have always demonstrated responsibility", Abbasi said.

Pakistani authorities released Saeed from house arrest in November due to lack of evidence, much to the United States administration's frustration. We believe he should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. LeT was responsible for carrying the 2008 Mumbai attack that killed 166 people.

"That's something that we've been very clear about all along".

Acknowledging that the U.S. has had some challenging times with the government of Pakistan recently, Nauert said the Trump administration expected Pakistan to do a lot more to address terrorism issues.

Responding to a question on Army chief General Bipin Rawat's remarks about calling Pakistan's "nuclear bluff", Abbasi said: "The Indian Army chief will not speak in favour of us. You know the news that we had that came out a couple weeks ago about our decision to withhold some of the security funding for Pakistan", she said. It has been declared as a foreign terrorist organisation by the United States in June 2014.

Two months later, the Donald Trump administration went a step further by revoking its $1.1 billion in security aid to Pakistan, although Washington later said the move wasn't related to Saeed's release.

In retaliation, Pakistan reportedly suspended military and intelligence co-operation with the US.

Saeed has been grabbing headlines often since his release from house arrest in November.

His close aide Saifullah Khalid then said the party would strive to make Pakistan "a real Islamic State".

File image of Hafiz Saeed.



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