US warns of ‘dam­age to bi­lat­eral ties, Pak­istan’s rep­u­ta­tion’ over Hafiz Saeed’s re­lease

The Miracle - - Current Affairs - Source: dawn.com

The White House has called Pak­istan’s re­lease of Ja­maatud Dawa (JuD) leader Hafiz Saeed a “step in the wrong di­rec­tion” and said a re­fusal to re-ar­rest him would dam­age bi­lat­eral ties and Pak­istan’s rep­u­ta­tion around the world. In a state­ment on Satur­day, White House spokes­woman Sarah Huck­abee San­ders said the US “strongly con­demns” the re­lease of Hafiz Saeed from house ar­rest. She urged his “im­me­di­ate re-ar­rest and pros­e­cu­tion”. “Saeed’s re­lease, af­ter Pak­istan’s fail­ure to pros­e­cute or charge him, sends a deeply trou­bling mes­sage about Pak­istan’s com­mit­ment to com­bat­ting in­ter­na­tional ter­ror­ism and be­lies Pak­istani claims that it will not pro­vide sanc­tu­ary for ter­ror­ists on its soil,” she said. “If Pak­istan does not take ac­tion to law­fully de­tain Saeed and charge him for his crimes, its in­ac­tion will have reper­cus­sions for bi­lat­eral re­la­tions and for Pak­istan’s global rep­u­ta­tion,” San­ders said. On Fri­day, Washington had urged Pak­istan to re-ar­rest Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) leader Hafiz Saeed and charge him with the crimes he was ac­cused of com­mit­ting. Saeed was re­leased be­fore dawn on Fri­day af­ter a three-judge panel in La­hore High Court ended his de­ten­tion in La­hore. Saeed’s spokesman Yahya Mu­jahid called it a “vic­tory of truth.” Ad­dress­ing a ser­mon at La­hore’s Jamia Masjid Al Qad­sia a day af­ter walk­ing free, Saeed said he was “fight­ing for the free­dom of Pak­istan and Kash­mir.” The move out­raged both US and In­dian au­thor­i­ties. “In­dia is out­raged that a self-con­fessed and a UN pro­scribed ter­ror­ist is al­lowed to walk free and con­tinue with his agenda,” Raveesh Ku­mar, In­dia’s for­eign min­istry spokesman, told re­porters at a weekly brief­ing in New Delhi.

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