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ISI behind Kabul blast: National Security Advisor

NSA MK Narayanan says Govt has proof of Pakistani intelligence agency ISI’s involvement in the suicide attack on Indian mission, reports Nagendar Sharma.

delhi Updated: Jul 13, 2008 02:24 IST
Nagendar Sharma
Nagendar Sharma
Hindustan Times

The government for the first time said on Saturday that it had “pretty good evidence” about the involvement of Pakistan’s intelligence agency, ISI, in the suicide attack on the Indian embassy in Kabul that killed 54 people.

<b1>“There is a pretty good evidence on this,” said National Security Advisor MK Narayanan on the sidelines of a government briefing on the nuclear deal. He was responding to specific questions on the ISI’s role.

“The ISI needs to be destroyed. We made this point, whenever we have had a chance... There might have been some tactical restraint for some time, obviously that restraint is no longer present,” he told TV channels earlier in the day according to the Press Trust of India.

The Afghan government had in fact hinted on the day of the attack at the involvement of the Pakistani intelligence service. Officials had said they suspected a “regional intelligence service” was behind it.

Though Pakistan was not named by anyone, Islamabad reacted angrily. On Friday, its foreign minister Shah Mahmood Quereshi, on a visit to the United States, said, “We are telling our friends in Afghanistan that the disturbances they are seeing and the increase in violence is not of Pakistan’s creation.”

Fifty-four persons including two Indian diplomats died when a suicide bomber drove his car into their car outside the Indian embassy in Kabul on July 7. Two Indian security personnel were also killed.

Earlier on Saturday, the NSA told TV channels, “We have no doubt that the ISI is behind this….people of the country deserve to know the facts.” Echoing the NSA’s views, a senior government official said India would take up the matter soon with Pakistan. “There has been evidence regarding the involvement of ISI in acts of terror in India. Now it chose to attack our mission abroad. We would be taking up the matter with Pakistan soon,” the official said.