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Islamabad must act, says Pranab

Source: PTI
December 21, 2008 14:54 IST
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Taking a tough stance, External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee on Sunday said that Pakistan had been given enough evidence regarding the Mumbai terror attacks and 'Islamabad must act'.

"Pakistan has been contradicting its statements. Enough evidence has been given to Pakistan. Pakistan must cooperate and not contradict us. Mere talk is not enough. Pakistan has to act," Mukherjee told a conference at the Bengal Chamber of Commerce in Kolkata.

 "Instead of contradiction and denial, they will have to take action," Mukherjee added.

"We can deal only with the government of the day. Therefore, all arguments which are coming from the other side (Pakistan) are not really convincing," Mukherjee said.

The first reaction from Islamabad was that non-state actors were involved in the attacks, he recalled. "Non-state actors do not come from heaven, nor do they operate from another planet," he said.

"But from wherever they are operating, it is the responsibility of the incumbent government to deal with them", he said, adding that "we cannot chase the so-called non-state actors in another country. They will have to take the action".

"I have never used the word Pakistan government, but I have deliberately used the phrase 'some elements in
Pakistan'. Evidence clearly indicates (their involvement)," the minister said.

"We have the evidence, including intercepts of the conversation via satellite. Yesterday, I described the conversation as a chilling account. The captured living terrorist (Amir Ajmal Kasab) gave the chilling account of what transpired between him and the controller from that side. They were monitoring Indian television. We have this type of information," he said.

Pakistan must pursue the evidence and take action, he said, noting that "words must be followed up by action".

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