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Mumbai attacks hurt Kashmir cause: Pakistan’s ex-Foreign Secretary 

Washington, Nov 7 (IANS) The 2008 Mumbai terrorist attacks have done irreparable damage to the Kashmir cause and tarnished Islamabad’s image as well, Pakistan’s former Foreign Secretary Riaz Mohammad Khan has said.

“Besides tarnishing Pakistan’s image, the attacks also did irreparable damage to the Kashmir cause,” said Khan while addressing a gathering at the Pakistan Embassy in Washington earlier this week, Dawn online reported on Tuesday.

At least 166 people, including foreign tourists, were killed by 10 armed men who went on a rampage that included attacks on two luxury hotels, a Jewish centre, and a train station in Mumbai. 

India accused Jamaat-ud-Dawa (JuD) chief Hafiz Saeed of masterminding the November attacks, which brought Islamabad and New Delhi to the brink of a war. 

Khan referred to a recent edict by the Imam of Kaaba, saying that “Islam does not allow private individuals and groups to declare jihad”. 

The former Foreign Secretary said that mistakes of these militant groups could not be used to weaken “the indigenous and legitimate freedom movement” in Kashmir, as “not a single Kashmiri supports the Indian occupation”, the daily reported.

Ambassador Touqir Hussain, another senior Pakistani diplomat, referred to a recent statement by America’s UN envoy Nikki Haley, saying Washington had asked the Indians to keep an eye on Pakistan.

Hussain said “people like her were trying to diminish Pakistan’s influence to help India suppress the Kashmiri struggle”. 

“… New Delhi should remember that empire mightier than India have fallen because of their overreach and this can happen to India too if it continued to ignore the grievances of the Kashmiri people,” he was quoted as saying by the daily. 

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