In wake of the terror attack in Mumbai, India is renewing demands Pakistan
hand over wanted fugitives. India's government says a list of alleged terrorists
and others has been re-submitted in a formal diplomatic request. VOA
correspondent Steve Herman in New Delhi reports the move is seen as the latest
effort to pressure Islamabad to take action to defuse the network on Pakistani
soil that allegedly plans and carries out terrorist attacks against India.
India's external affairs minister, speaking to reporters Tuesday, has given some details of the formal diplomatic note - known as a "
demarche" - handed to Pakistan's top envoy here.
Pranab Mukherjee says the document contains the names of about 20 individuals India has long wanted extradited from Pakistan.
"The demarche asks the arrest and hand-over of those persons who are settled in Pakistan and who are fugitives of Indian law," Mukherjee said.
List includes India's most wanted man
Although India's government did not release the names of those on the fugitive list, Indian media say they include the infamous Mumbai crime kingpin, Dawood Ibrahim, and Maulana Masood Azhar - a Pakistani Muslim cleric who, in 1999, was freed from an Indian prison, in exchange for passengers on a hijacked Indian airliner.
Ibrahim is considered India's most wanted man. His organization is suspected of involvement in a 1993 bombing in Mumbai that left 250 people dead. Indian media reports say there is also official suspicion some of his underlings may have provided support to the terrorists who struck last week.
Azhar leads the group Jaish-e-Mohammad, which is believed to support Muslim separatists in the part of disputed Kashmir which is under Indian control.
India initially gave Pakistani officials the list six years ago and says it never received an adequate response.
India blames Pakistani elements for Mumbai terror attack
The Mumbai terror attack, which India blames on elements in Pakistan, threatens to send relations between the two nuclear-armed neighbors into their worst state since 2002.
An intense international diplomatic effort is under way to try to prevent tensions between New Delhi and Islamabad from entering another crisis phase. The two nuclear-capable countries have gone to war against each other three times since their independence in 1947.
Among those already here or about to arrive in the Indian capital are the Arab League Secretary-General Amr Moussa, U.S. Senator John McCain and U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.
Indian Cabinet meeting discusses security strategy
Tuesday, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh chaired a meeting of his security Cabinet to discuss strategies. Government officials say among those attending were the defense, foreign and home ministers as well as the chiefs of the armed forces and the national security advisor.
In recent days, top Pakistani government officials have vowed to cooperate with India to determine responsibility for the attack on Mumbai. But Islamabad rejects any allegations of complicity, blaming non-state actors which Pakistan says it is also battling.