India hands over Mumbai massacre 'evidence' to Pakistan

India produced evidence today about the Mumbai attacks which it said conclusively tied the killers to “elements” in Pakistan.

India produced evidence today about the Mumbai attacks which it said conclusively tied the killers to “elements” in Pakistan.

The move was a response to weeks of demands from Islamabad for proof that the siege was launched from across the border.

India has consistently blamed the November attacks that killed 164 people on Pakistani-based militants.

The evidence handed to the Pakistani High Commissioner in New Delhi today included material from the interrogation of the lone surviving gunman, details of conversations between the gunmen and their alleged handlers in Pakistan, recovered weapons, and information from satellite phones.

“This material is linked to elements in Pakistan,” the foreign ministry said. “It is our expectation that the government of Pakistan will promptly undertake further investigations in Pakistan and share the results with us so as to bring the perpetrators to justice.”

Pakistan’s foreign ministry said it was reviewing the evidence.

India has blamed the three-day siege on Lashkar-e-Taiba, a militant group based in Pakistan. Authorities there have arrested at least two men accused of planning the attacks and launched a nationwide crackdown on a charity believed to be a front for the militant group.

India has called on Pakistan to hand over the suspects and dismantle the terror network they say is based across the border. Pakistani leaders say they will try any suspects in the attacks in their own courts.

India’s top security official, Home Minister Palaniappan Chidambaram, has said he suspects the Mumbai gunmen may have had ties to Pakistani authorities and not just militants in that country.

In the wake of the attacks, tensions between the rival countries have been high. Pakistan has redeployed troops toward India and away from the Afghan border, where authorities are battling militants.

Critics say the troop movement will hurt the Pakistani army’s attempts to gain control of the lawless tribal region.

India has worked for weeks to marshal global pressure on Pakistan, and Foreign Minister Pranab Mukherjee said the evidence handed over to Islamabad would also be shared with the international community.

Pakistan’s Interior Ministry chief Rehman Malik said, however, “we will not take pressure from anyone.”

India and Pakistan have fought three wars against each other since they gained independence in 1947 – two over Kashmir, a majority Muslim region in the Himalayas claimed by both countries. Despite increased tensions, Indian leaders have made clear they do not want to fight a fourth.

Much of India’s evidence against the militants comes from interrogations of Mohammed Ajmal Kasab, the only gunman to survive the attacks. He has reportedly told authorities he and nine others were Pakistani, he was trained in Pakistan, and his handlers are still there.

Pakistan has said it has no record of Kasab as a Pakistani citizen. Malik said Monday authorities were still examining his claim.

The Mumbai attacks began on November 26 and lasted for nearly three days. The 10 gunmen attacked 10 sites across India’s financial capital, including two five-star hotels, the main train station, popular restaurants and a Jewish centre.

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