India asks Pakistan to increase security at embassy
NEW DELHI: India asked Pakistan to increase security at its embassy, officials said on Thursday after the execution of militant Ajmal Kasab who was hanged for his role in the 2008 Mumbai attacks.
India notified Pakistan on Tuesday of the imminent execution and asked for higher security out of fear of demonstrations or possible reprisals.
Kasab admitted to being a member of Pakistan-based militant group Lashkar-e-Taiba, which remains a powerful force in the violence-torn country which is home to numerous armed anti-India groups.
“We did ask for precautionary measures in terms of protecting our diplomats in Pakistan. We sent a missive to that effect,” Indian Foreign Minister Salman Khurshid told foreign journalists late on Wednesday after the execution.
An Indian foreign ministry spokesman confirmed on Thursday that the demand had been made as “there was a need for extra security”.
The Indian move was following a threat by the TTP reported by Reuters on Thursday to attack Indian targets to avenge the country’s execution of Mohammad Ajmal Kasab, the lone survivor of the militant squad responsible for a rampage through Mumbai that killed 166 people in 2008.
“We have decided to target Indians to avenge the killing of Ajmal Kasab,” Taliban spokesman Ehsanullah Ehsan told Reuters by telephone from an undisclosed location.
The TTP spokesman also demanded that Kasab’s body be returned by Indian authorities. Ehsanullah Ehsan told news agency the Associated Press that Kasab’s body must be given back to his family or handed over to the Taliban.
Mohammed Ajmal Kasab, 25, was hanged at a prison in western India after being convicted of “waging war on India” for his role in the three-day assault on India’s commercial capital that left 166 people dead.
Kasab, a former labourer and small-time criminal, was the only survivor out of 10 heavily-armed gunmen who laid siege to the city in what was intended as a suicide mission.