November 2001 News

Confusion over, LeT may be put on US President''s list

9 November 2001
The Indian Express

Washington DC: The United States has indicated that after the Jaish-e-Mohammad, it may be the other militant organisation Lashkar-e-Toiba''s turn to be on the President''s executive order of terrorist organisations, meaning a virtual ban on it. A senior administration official told visiting journalists from India that the LeT was ''not far behind'' in becoming an organisation that would be put on the President''s executive order list. The official''s statement came in the wake of confusion over the recent decisions on the organisations deriving support from Pakistan and operating in Kashmir. The official said while the Jaish''s case was clear because of the evidence collected against it to establish its links with al Qaeda, Lashkar had not been put either on the executive order list or among the foreign terrorist organisations. But Lashkar was among the list of 46 suspected organisations the Attorney General Ashcroft had forwarded to the State Department. On the current Indo-US relations in the context of Washington making Pakistan a key component of the global coalition against terrorism, the official said India did not view the Indo-US relations with the same prism but wanted to de-hyphenate ties with the two. The official did say the US was pleased with the ''180-degree turn'' of Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf on the issue of terrorism and his full support to the current campaign against the menace. The administration was keen that the upswing in the relations between India and US would be maintained irrespective of the current campaign because the relationship between the two countries was multi- faceted. The US government was keen that restraint was maintained by both India and Pakistan but the official would not answer ''hypothetical'' questions on what the US would do if India chose to attack the terrorist camps in Pak-occupied Kashmir in case of any fresh violence in Jammu and Kashmir.


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