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Pak considering filing appeal against Saeed's release

Pakistan on Thursday said it was "very seriously" considering filing an appeal against the Lahore High Court's order releasing banned Jamaat-ud-Dawah chief Hafeez Mohammed Saeed from detention in connection with the Mumbai terror attacks.

world Updated: Jun 11, 2009 16:50 IST

Pakistan on Thursday said it was "very seriously" considering filing an appeal against the Lahore High Court's order releasing banned Jamaat-ud-Dawah chief Hafeez Mohammed Saeed from detention in connection with the Mumbai terror attacks.

The matter of filing an appeal against the High Court order freeing Saeed from house arrest "has not been given up", Foreign Office spokesman Abdul Basit said.

He was answering a question at the weekly news briefing on whether Pakistan had dropped plans to file an appeal against Lahore High Court's order.

The issue is "being considered very seriously," Basit said. However, he did not give any details. Basit had last week said that the provincial government of Punjab would be filing the appeal against the court's order.

The Lahore High Court had on June 2 ordered the release of 59-year-old Saeed, who has been under house arrest since December 11, immediately and held his detention as illegal.

Saeed was put under house arrest on December 11 last year after the UN Security Council banned the Jamaat, declaring it a front for Lashkar-e-Taiba, which is blamed by India for November 26 Mumbai terror attacks that killed over 180 people.

Immediately after Saeed was released, India had voiced its disappointment, saying it raises serious doubts over Pakistan's sincerity in acting with determination against terrorist groups and individuals operating from its territory.

A close aide of Saeed, Col (retd) Nazir Mohammad, also held in connection with the November 26 attacks in Mumbai, was freed along with Saeed by the High Court.

The judges had said the government "has no sufficient grounds to detain the petitioners for preventive measures". They added that the government could not rely on the UN Security Council resolution, which imposed restrictions on the JuD, to detain as two men as this was "not desired" by the resolution.

The bench quashed the "impugned detention orders" for Saeed and Ahmed and ordered that they should be "released forthwith if not required in any other case".