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Pak may prosecute 120 people connected to Mumbai attacks

world Updated: Feb 03, 2009 13:26 IST
Pak may prosecute 120 people connected to Mumbai attacks

The Pakistan government plans to prosecute over 120 people who might be connected to the Mumbai terror attacks, but the list includes "few if any" of the top militant leaders against whom India has sought action, according to a media report.

This will be the first time that Pakistan will prosecute militants once supported by the country's powerful Inter-Services Intelligence agency though the absence from the list of most militant leaders whose prosecution has been sought by India "reflects the delicate balance Pakistan is trying to achieve", ABC News quoted a senior intelligence official as saying.

Those prosecuted might include "anyone who made any suspicious contacts inside India as the (Mumbai) attacks began" and they will be charged under Pakistan's cyber crime laws because the suspects used Internet phones to communicate, the intelligence official said.

The government's move is aimed at "appeasing international pressure to crack down on militants who have operated from its soil and at the same time not completely dismantling groups that the intelligence agencies still see as assets", the report said.

Indian and US authorities have accused Pakistan-based Lashker-e-Taiba terror group and its front, the Jamaat-ud-Dawah, of planning the attacks that killed over 180 people in Mumbai. The LeT was created with the backing of the ISI and it has for long had links to the spy agency.

The Mumbai attacks "forced Pakistan to choose between continuing to support, or at least shelter, a group created by its powerful spy agency almost 20 years ago, or shutting it following massive international pressure", ABC News reported.