US committed to Mumbai probe, says Mulford


New Delhi : The US Monday said it has consistently supported India over bringing the attackers of Mumbai to justice and underlined that it will pursue to its logical conclusion the investigations into the terror strike, which also killed six Americans.

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“The US will pursue the matter to its logical conclusion,” US ambassador to India David Mulford told reporters here when asked about Washington’s response to the evidence New Delhi has collected that links Pakistan-based elements to the Nov 26 attacks.

“The FBI (Federal Bureau of Investigation) will pursue the evidence. If Americans are killed, then the US has a duty to investigate the killing,” Mulford said on the sidelines of a function to commemorate the 50th year of the opening of the American embassy building here.

“The US is supporting India,” Mulford replied when asked whether the US will pressure Pakistan to hand over suspects wanted by India in the Mumbai carnage.

Alluding to visits by top US officials, including US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and her deputy John Negorponte, to India in the aftermath of the attacks, the envoy underlined the US’ resolve to bring the perpetrators of the Mumbai mayhem to justice.

The US envoy also expressed Washington’s displeasure with a reported move by the banned militant outfit Jamat-ud-Dawa (JuD), a public front for the Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT), to regroup itself under a new banner.

“The name may have changed. You don’t change the spots in a leopard,” he replied when asked about reports suggesting the JuD has resurrected itself under a new banner.

The envoy, however, reserved his comments on the evidence India has collected.

“It’s not possible to comment on an ongoing evidence,” the said.

Foreign Secretary Shivshankar Menon will meet Mulford and other envoys of friendly countries later Monday and share with them evidence about the complicity of Pakistan-based groups in the Mumbai mayhem.

Earlier in the day, Menon handed over the evidence, that included intercepts of satellite phone calls between the terrorists attacking Mumbai and their handlers in Pakistan, to Pakistan’s high commissioner Shahid Malik and asked Islamabad to act upon the evidence.