Days after Pakistani-American LeT operative David Headley implicated ISI in the Mumbai attacks during his testimony in a US court, interior minister Rehman Malik has described him as a convict who has “no credibility and cannot be trusted”.
In an apparent effort to play down Headley’s testimony that detailed the alleged links of ISI officials to the 2008 attacks in Mumbai, Malik questioned whether Headley could corroborate his claims about Pakistan’s spy agency. “Headley’s father was a Pakistani from a good family. Headley himself is a criminal and a convict... This man has no credibility and cannot be trusted,” he told Newsweek magazine in an interview.
Asked if he was concerned about Headley's testimony at the US trial of Tahawwur Rana, another main suspect in the 26/11 attacks, and its repercussions for Pakistan, Malik said if Headley “has credible evidence that can stand in a court of law to support his claim that he was being aided by the ISI, he should present it”.
“He’s made videos of the places he was casing in Mumbai. Does he have any recordings that corroborate his claims against the so-called ISI major?” Six Pakistanis, including al Qaeda-linked terror mastermind Ilyas Kashmiri and Major Iqbal, have been indicted by US authorities in the Mumbai conspiracy.
Malik contended that Pakistan’s “hands are clean on Mumbai, and India is aware of this”. He pointed out that the ISI had been “exonerated” after being linked to the bombing of the Samjhauta Express cross-border train in India. “You’ll see that happen in this (Mumbai) case, too,” Malik said.
Asked if Pakistan was slow in moving against terrorists and their supporters, he replied: “We asked India to provide us substantive evidence against (LeT founder) Hafiz Saeed, but we haven’t received it yet.”
“We have a new anti-terrorism bill that covers these gaps and the draft will be tabled soon for Parliament’s approval,” he added.