Pak acts before Secy-level talks; JeM offices sealed

RSTV Bureau
Pathankot: Security personnel during their operation against the militants who attacked the Indian Air Force base in Pathankot on Sunday, January 4, 2015. Photo - PTI

Pathankot: Security personnel during their operation against the militants who attacked the Indian Air Force base in Pathankot on Sunday, January 4, 2015.
Photo – PTI

Two days before the scheduled Foreign Secretary-level talks between India and Pakistan, the latter detained several individuals belonging to terror outfit Jaish-e-Muhhamed, which is alleged to be behind dastardly terrorist attack on the Pathankot airbase on January 1. Acting on India’s call of “prompt and decisive” action, Pakistan agencies also claimed to have sealed the offices of JeM on Wednesday.

“Based on initial investigations in Pakistan, and the information provided, several individuals belonging to Jaish-e-Mohammad have been apprehended. The offices of the organisation are also being traced and sealed. Further investigations are underway,” the statement released by Pakistan PM Nawaz Sharif’s office read.

The statement also read that Pakistan is considering sending a special investigation team to India to aid the investigations in Pathankot air base attack.

“In the spirit of the cooperative approach, it was also decided that in order to carry the process forward, additional information would be required, for which the Government of Pakistan is considering to send a Special Investigation Team to Pathankot, in consultation with the Government of India,” the statement further read.

FILE: File photo of Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar.  Photo - PTI

FILE: File photo of Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar.
Photo – PTI

The Pakistani action, which was reviewed at a high-level meeting chaired by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, came as the fate of the FS-level talks hangs in fragile balance.

As per the schedule chalked out earlier, Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar is slated to go to Islamabad on Friday for talks with his counterpart on resuming the Indo-Pak dialogue process. The suspense, however, over the talks is still hovering on.

The government of India sought action on the part of Pakistan soon after the JeM-link to Pathankot terror attack became clear. PM Modi had firmly conveyed his Pakistan counterpart after the latter had called up at the time of terror attack.

Six terrorists belonging to the dreaded Jaish-e-Mohammad, headed by Maulana Masood Azhar of Kandahar hijack episode, is believed by India to be behind Pathankot attack. Seven security personnel, including a Lt Col. rank NSG officer, were killed.

Meanwhile, Pakistan, in a statement released by its PM’s office, claimed self-satisfaction over the “action” it took against the JeM.

“The meeting noted with satisfaction that as part of Pakistan’s commitment to eliminate terrorism from our soil and the expressed national resolve not to allow our territory to be used for acts of terrorism anywhere, considerable progress has been made in the investigations being carried out against terrorist elements reportedly linked to the Pathankot incident,” read the statement issued by Pak Prime Minister’s office.

(With inputs from the PTI)