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"Yes, he is in Pak", Qureshi confirms Masood's presence

Friday,01 March 2019 08:03 AM IST

Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi has confirmed the presence of Jaish-e-Mohammed founder and terror master Masood Azhar in their country. Masood Azhar's Jaish had killed 40 CRPF Indian men in Jammu & Kashmir's Pulwama district. Later, India struck terror launch pads deep inside Pakistan in a pre-dawn strike, on 26 February, where 200-300 terrorists were believed to be killed.

Qureshi, in an interview to CNN, said that Masood has been undergoing treatment for various health issues and he can't come out of his home. The Minister also added that they need strong evidence to take action against Masood Azhar.

"If they (India) give us evidence which is acceptable to the courts of Pakistan - after all we will have to justify, they will go to court - and if they have solid, inalienable evidence, share it with us so that we can convince the people and convince the independent judiciary of Pakistan," said the minister.

India has been pushing the UN for several years to list Masood Azhar as a global terrorist, but blocked by the repeated intervention of China, an all-weather ally of Pakistan.

Masood Azhar was the mastermind behind all the major terror attacks in India, the 2001 attack on Parliament, attack on the Pathankot airforce base in 2016, Uri attack in 2016 and the final one in Pulwama last month.

Pakistan's public acknowledgement of Massod's presence lies significantly at a time when they face the heat of global pressure to act against terror activities emanating from their soil.

The Foreign Minister has said that they will hand over the Indian Air Force Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman at the Wagah Border, around  3-4 pm today. Reports emerged that Pakistan will carry him through army aircraft from Rawalpindi to Lahore, and by road to the Wagah Border.
His parents will receive Abhinanadan at the border.

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