PM asks Pakistan to combat terror monster

Adieu, PM: A folk artist performs as Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Tanzania President Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete, along with their wives and officials, watch a dance ceremony before Singh’s departure for Delhi from  the  Julius Nyerere International Airport, Dar-es-Salaam, in Tanzania on Saturday. PTI

In his first reaction after Pakistani-American terrorist David Coleman Headley’s stunning disclosures about the ISI’s role in 26/11 Mumbai terror, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Saturday warned Pakistan to control jihadi groups that target India and underlined that it was in Islamabad’s interest to control the ''monster of terrorism'' it has unleashed.

In the same breath, Manmohan Singh, however, said that the dialogue process that has be­en resumed will continue, ad­ding that India should “use every possible opportunity to talk to Pakistan and convince them that terror as an instrum­e­nt of state policy is not simp­ly acceptable to the civilised world”.

While returning from a six-day visit to Ethiopia and Tanz­ania, Manmohan Singh used the strongest language ever for Pakistan’s failure to shut down the terror machinery directed against India in which some elements of Pakistani state are suspected to be involved.

“The more I see of what is happening in Pakistan the mo­re I am convinced that Pakis­tan’s leadership must now wake up, and must recognise that the terror machine they have or at least some elements in the country patronise, is not working to anybody’s advantage,” he said.

Neighbour’s worries

“As Pakistan’s neighbour, we have great worries about the terror machine that is still intact in Pakistan. We would like Pakistan to take much more effective action to curb the activities of those jihadi groups which particularly target a country like India.”

Reacting to Headley’s disclosures in a Chicago court that has nailed the Pakistan spy agency ISI’s role in 26/11 attack, Manmohan Singh said: “This trial of David Headley has not brought out anything new that we did not know.”

“The trial is still on, we will study it when the trial is completed. But as I said, it has not revealed anything which we did not know,” he said, telling Pakistan upfront that some elements in that country patronise terror as an instrument of state policy. He also aired India’s concerns over the terror attack at a naval base in Karachi that has stirred anxieties about the safety of Pakistan’s nuclear weapons. “Let me say that what happens in our neighbourhood matters a great deal. I have always maintained that a strong, stable and peaceful Pakistan is in the inte­rest of our country, and therefore these events do worry us.”

“And I hope that Pakistan will also recognise that this monster of terrorism which they unleashed at one time, is hurting them as much as it can hurt our country. And it is in this background that we have to look at our relations with Pakistan,” he said.

Asking Pakistan to control jihadi groups that target India, the prime minister underlined that it was “in Pakistan’s own interest that they must help us in tackling the problem of terror in our region”.

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