India to share Jindal evidence, Pakistan reverts to Kashmir (Second Lead)July 3rd, 2012 - 9:38 pm ICT by IANS
New Delhi, July 3 (IANS) A day before talks, Pakistan Tuesday sought to renew the focus on the Kashmir issue with its foreign secretary meeting the state’s separatist leaders even as India geared up to share evidence about 26/11 plotter Abu Jindal’s links with Pakistani terrorists and state actors.
Pakistan’s Foreign Secretary Jalil Abbas Jilani arrived here via the Wagah border and stressed that he has been given the mandate to carry forward the dialogue process with India. He asked India to India to share evidence about Abu Jindal’s role in the Mumbai terror strike and offered help in the fight against terror.
In a move that is calculated to provoke India, Jilani met leading Kashmiri separatists, including Hurriyat leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani, Mirwaiz Umar Farroq and Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front chief Yasin Malik, later in the evening and assured them that he will take up the Kashmir issue in talks with his Indian counterpart Ranjan Mathai Wednesday.
Mathai and Jilani will begin two-day talks Wednesday that will focus on issues like peace and security including confidence-building measures, Jammu and Kashmir, and the promotion of friendly exchanges.
The agenda of the foreign-secretary talks had been fixed well in advance, but in the wake of the disclosures made by Abu Jindal, an Indian key 26/11 plotter with links to Pakistani militants, terrorism is set to become the main focus of the talks.
With Pakistan resorting to the Kashmir issue in what is seen as a ploy to divert attention from 26/11 terror, India upped the ante and is preparing to share a dossier on Abu Jindal, including a copy of his passport and identity card, at the talks, said informed sources in the home ministry.
Jindal’s passport shows his present and permanent address in Pakistan and his visa for Saudi Arabia had been also issued on the Pakistani passport. Islamabad has been predictably in denial, with Interior Minister Rehman Malik had called Jindal’s passport fake.
The sources added that the National Investigation Agency (NIA) will take custody of 26/11 plotter Jindal for further interrogation. Jundal’s voice samples will be matched with the intercepts available with intelligence agencies.
Home Minister P. Chidambaram has upped the ante on the terror issue. On Friday, he pressed Pakistan to admit facts relating to Abu Jindal Hamza having set up a “control room” in Karachi and having trained the 10 terrorists who attacked Mumbai in November 2008.
Chidambaram also underlined that the disclosures made by Jindal, who was arrested here June 21 after being deported from Saudi Arabia, point to the involvement of Pakistani state actors in the carnage that left 166 dead
During the interrogation, Jindal himself has confessed to his active role in the 26/11 attack, saying he had worked closely with terror mastermind Zakiur Rehman Lakhvi.
Pakistan tried to set a positive tone about the talks by offering cooperation in the struggle against terrorism.
“I am looking forward to my meeting with Ranjan Mathai. We would discuss issue related to peace and security, Jammu and Kashmir,” said Jilani after arriving in New Delhi.
“We have seen press reports regarding Jindal, we will extend all possible help to India. Criminals are criminals in Pakistan and in India. We condemn any terrorist,” he said here when asked about stunning revelations made by Jindal.
However, in a move that has upset India, Jilani met Kashmiri separatist leaders, with Geelani asking Islamabad to press India hard for resolution of the Kashmir issue.
“Pakistan should press India hard to resolve the Kashmir issue,” Geelani told reporters after the meeting. He said it was the responsibility of Pakistan to resolve the Kashmir issue and stressed that the talks between India and Pakistan can’t succeed unless this core issue is resolved.
According to Geelani, the Pakistani foreign secretary assured him that he will take up the Kashmir issue with Mathai at the talks.
The meeting has not gone down well with New Delhi.
Sources in India’s foreign ministry said such meeting are not conducive to creating a positive atmosphere or reducing trust deficit between the two countries.
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