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Kasab didn't use sea route, says Pak navy chief

Source: PTI
Last updated on: February 27, 2009 20:35 IST
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Pakistan navy chief Admiral Noman Bashir on Friday claimed that there was no proof that Ajmal Amir Kasab, the lone terrorist arrested during the terror attack on Mumbai in November last year, had used the sea route to reach India's financial capital.

"We have consistent surveillance on the maritime border. There is no possibility that Kasab and his associates used the sea route from Pakistan," he told a press conference.

He also termed the terror attack as a failure on the part of the Indian Navy.

"According to the information with me as of now, it is not proved that Ajmal Kasab travelled from here in a boat. We can look into this issue after we get more evidence," Bashir said.

"No evidence has been provided to us on whether Ajmal Kasab went (to Mumbai) from Pakistan. You must have read the Foreign Office's statements that we have sought evidence from India," he said.

"Their (India's) claim is that some people embarked on the boats named (Kuber) and Al-Husseini from here and went there. It will be difficult to comment on this till there is some evidence," said Bashir, who is the brother of Foreign Secretary Salman Bashir.

When it was pointed out by journalists that interior ministry chief Rehman Malik had said that the terrorists travelled from Pakistan to Indian waters in boats and these vessels had been found by Pakistani investigators, Bashir said the navy had no evidence in this regard.

Bashir claimed there are "many questions which have no answers". Pakistani authorities would investigate such issues once they get more evidence from India, he said.

"Everything will come out in the open as there is nothing to hide," he added.

The naval chief, however, acknowledged there was a "possibility" that someone might have sneaked out of Pakistan's coastal areas that are not watched by authorities responsible for ports, harbours and fisheries.

Such authorities, including the customs, immigration department and agencies responsible for port security, are very stringent, Bashir said.

He pointed out that Pakistan is also part of the international Combined Task Force 150 that is tasked to prevent terrorism at sea.

"If Pakistan Navy had found out (about the Mumbai attacks), we would have stopped (the terrorists)," he said.  


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