Plausible that ISI facilitated Mumbai attack: Pakistani daily

Islamabad, Feb 12 (IANS) It may very well be plausible that officials from within the ISI facilitated the 2008 Mumbai terror attack, a Pakistani daily said and noted that Pakistani-American David Coleman Headley’s testimony has really not revealed as much as the Indian government would have been hoping.

An editorial “Revelations” in the Nation on Friday said that in an video testimony to an Indian court Headley corroborated the Indian version of speculation surrounding the 2008 Mumbai attacks because, according to the Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) facilitator/terrorist, the ISI orchestrated the whole attack, handling each LeT member from this side of the border.

It said that the testimony should not be accepted as fact immediately, however, for a number of reasons.

“Primarily, Headley’s intentions will always be subject for debate, because here is a man who first conspired against the Indian state and its people, supposedly at the behest of the ISI if his version is to be believed, and now speaks from a US prison after being granted amnesty by India for his part in the attack in exchange for information.”

“The Headley case perfectly captures the Pakistan-India relationship in the recent past. The Indian government blames ISI while the Pakistani side points fingers at RAW in its turn,” said the daily.

It said that the US would have been perfectly aware of the testimony Headley would give and “the uproar it would result in on the Indian side of the border, it let it go through which is essentially accusing Pakistan of fostering terror on home soil while simultaneously congratulating Pakistani efforts on eradicating terror in the country in a separate statement in the same day”.

In his latest interview, Headley has really not revealed as much as the Indian government would have been hoping, the daily said, adding: “Apart from pinning Ishrat Jahan as an alleged LeT operative, Headley’s assertions are a repeat of what he stated to the Indian National Investigation Agency in 2012.”

“Hafiz Saeed may indeed have had a large role to play in the attack, and given that LeT is a product of our own misguided policy of strategic depth, it may very well be altogether plausible that officials from within the ISI facilitated the 2008 attack,” the Nation said.

“But this is a far cry from the institutional and governmental support that India claims was behind the attack.”

The Mumbai terror strike took place at multiple locations, leaving 166 people dead and over 300 injured on November 26-28, 2008.

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