Pakistan appeals court release of LeT head

July 6, 2009 at 9:45 AM
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LAHORE, Pakistan, July 6 (UPI) -- The Pakistani government Monday appealed a court decision to free Hafiz Saeed, the leader of Jamaat-ud-Dawa accused by India of plotting the Mumbai assault.

Saeed was placed under house arrest in December after a U.N. Security Council committee added him and Jamaat-ud-Dawa to a list of people and organizations linked to al-Qaida or the Taliban.

The Lahore High Court ordered his release June 2, citing lack of evidence to hold him, reported Dawn, Pakistan's English-language newspaper. The federal and Punjab provincial governments both filed petitions in the Supreme Court Monday, asking the Lahore court to rescind its order to release Saeed and an associate.

The coordinated attacks on Mumbai, in which 166 people died, has strained ties between India and Pakistan, and led to an Indian freeze on a five-year peace process.

India maintained the assault was carried out by Pakistan-based members of the Lashkar-e-Toiba organization and that the outlawed organization must have had backing from some official Pakistani agencies. The Pakistani government has denied involvement by state agencies, but the attacks on India's financial and entertainment hub were launched and partially planned in Pakistan.

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