Sunday, November 30, 2008

Pakistan president warns India not to over-react

Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari on Saturday warned India against any "over-reaction" after the militant attacks in Mumbai and vowed the "strictest" action if Pakistani involvement was proved. "Whoever is responsible for the brutal and crude act against the Indian people and India are looking for reaction," Zardari said in an interview with Indian CNN-IBN television.

"We have to rise above them and make sure ourselves, yourself and world community guard against over-reaction," he said according to an interview transcript issued by the Press Trust of India.

The Indian government has blamed "elements in Pakistan" for the attack by Islamist militants against multiple targets in Mumbai that left nearly 200 people dead.

Zardari promised that he would take immediate and strong measures if proof was provided of Pakistani involvement.

"Let me assure you that if any evidence points to any individual or any group in this part of the world, I shall take the strictest of action in the light of this evidence and in front of the world," he said.

A number of Indian officials have suggested the militants were from the Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Taiba -- notorious for a deadly assault on the Indian parliament in 2001 that pushed New Delhi and Islamabad to the edge of war.

The two nuclear-armed neighbours have fought three wars since gaining independence from Britain in 1947.

Zardari argued that reducing the Mumbai attacks to an India-Pakistan problem was counter-productive.

"This is a world threat and all the more reason we have to stand up against this threat together," he said.

Source : Agence France-Presse

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