“Arrest Hafiz Saeed,” Says US, after LeT Chief Walks Free in Pak
The United States has called for the immediate arrest of Jamaat-ut-Daawa (JuD) leader Hafiz Saeed, after he was released from house arrest on 24 November.
The US is deeply concerned that LeT leader Hafiz Seed has been released from house arrest in Pakistan. The Pakistani govt should make sure he is arrested and charged for his crimes. The LeT is a designated Foreign Terrorist Organization responsible for the death of hundreds of innocent civilians in terrorist attacks, including a number of American citizens.Heather Nauert, Spokesperson, US State Department
The LeT founder was released after a Judicial Review Board denied the Pakistan government’s request for an extension to the duration of his house arrest.
Hours after he was released, Saeed attacked former Pakistani PM Nawaz Sharif for his “friendship” with PM Modi, in a statement in Lahore, Reuters reported.
Saeed was placed under house arrest in January while Nawaz Sharif was Pakistan’s prime minister. While praising Pakistan’s move to place him under detention, India had also questioned whether the move was simply an eyewash aimed at placating tensions between Pakistan and the then newly elected Trump administration.
Hafiz Saeed has a $10 million US bounty on his head over the 26/11 Mumbai attack.
The Judicial Review Board of High Court Judges had rejected the Pakistani government’s plea to extend his house arrest, stating that the government had not submitted adequate evidence to warrant Saeed’s continued detention.
After the Judicial Review Board freed him on 22 November, Saeed released a video thanking the court for “justice.”
Saeed’s comments had also drawn a sharp response from the Ministry of Home Affairs. The MHA, in a statement, said that Saeed's comments on Kashmir were nothing but a rearticulation of the agenda of terrorists who have "thrived" across the border.
Saeed, along with Zaki-Ur-Rehman Lakhvi, are the founders of the Lashkar-e-Taeba terror outfit which was allegedly behind the 26/11 Mumbai attacks, which left over 160 people dead.
(With inputs from Reuters, PTI, and Times of Islamabad)