Archive for the ‘Durrani’ Category

Pakistan Fires Top Security Official, Indicating Dishonesty on Mumbai

January 8, 2009

Pakistan’s security agencies had recommended confirming the surviving Mumbai gunman was Pakistani, the country’s former national security adviser said Thursday, adding he was sacked because the prime minister was out of the loop.

India had said for weeks the captured gunman, Mohammed Ajmal Kasab, was Pakistani. Pakistan had stonewalled, saying his name was not on a national database and it was investigating.

Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani fired National Security Adviser Mahmud Ali Durrani Wednesday, shortly after he and other officials confirmed to reporters that Kasab was Pakistani.

Newspapers in India interpreted his dismissal as punishment for revealing the truth, while Pakistani media speculated it showed a split in power circles in Islamabad.

Durrani said authorities, including security agencies, had already decided to confirm the gunman was Pakistani.

“It had been decided yesterday that we would tell the world that he is a Pakistani because hiding that makes no sense,” Durrani told Reuters in a telephone interview.

By Robert Birsel, Reuters

“The security agencies recommended it,” he said.

India blames Pakistan militants for the strikes in November by 10 gunmen that killed 179 people and have revived tension between two nations that have fought three wars since 1947.

Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh stepped up a war of words Tuesday, saying for the first time the assault “must have had the support of some official agencies in Pakistan.”

Pakistan has denied any involvement by state agencies.

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