UN panel removes ‘sahib’ from Saeed’s name, regrets mistake

United Nations: A UN panel has regretted the use of the salutation ‘sahib’ for the Mumbai terror attack mastermind and JuD chief Hafiz Saeed and issued a “revised” letter removing the word after India objected to it.

The chair of the Security Council’s Al-Qaeda Sanctions Committee issued a revised letter in which it has “regretted the mistake” in the previous letter dated December 17. The committee’s chair is Gary Quinlan, who is the Permanent Representative of Australia to the UN.

Quinlan had made the reference to Saeed in the communication on information regarding banned terror organisation Lashkar-e-Taiba and its founder Saeed. The new letter clearly mentions the correct primary name of the Pakistani terrorist as Hafiz Mohammed Saeed.

The United Nations had declared JuD a terrorist organisation in December 2008. Saeed himself is a UN-designated terrorist. The resolution entails freezing of funds and other financial assets or economic resources of designated individuals and entities, and prevention of entry into or transit through their territories by designated individuals.

The United States had slapped a USD 10 million bounty on Saeed and his brother-in-law in April 2003. But Saeed roams freely in Pakistan and addresses public rallies in which he routinely makes inflammatory statements. Pakistan High Commissioner to India Abdul Basit had in September said, “Hafiz Saeed is a Pakistani national so he is free to roam around”, triggering a sharp response from India which termed the JuD chief an ‘evil’ mastermind of the 26/11 attacks.

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