Foreign Secretary Shivshankar Menon shared with Ambassador Mulford and fourteen other ambassadors January 5 evidence linking the Mumbai terrorist attacks to Pakistan.
185722,01/05/2009 14:23,09NEWDELHI17, Embassy New Delhi, CONFIDENTIAL, 09NEWDELHI16, "VZCZCXRO0425OO RUEHWEBDE RUEHNE #0017/01 0051423ZNY CCCCC ZZHO 051423Z JAN 09 ZDK ZDK ZDKFM AMEMBASSY NEW DELHITO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 4924INFO RUCNCLS/ALL SOUTH AND CENTRAL ASIA COLLECTIVERUEHBJ/AMEMBASSY BEIJING 7292RUEHRL/AMEMBASSY BERLIN 1101RUEHBY/AMEMBASSY CANBERRA 1424RUEHLO/AMEMBASSY LONDON 5777RUEHMO/AMEMBASSY MOSCOW 3009RUEHFR/AMEMBASSY PARIS 1441RUEHKO/AMEMBASSY TOKYO 6019RHMFISS/HQ USCENTCOM MACDILL AFB FLRHEHAAA/WHITE HOUSE WASHDCRUEAIIA/CIA WASHDCRHHMUNA/HQ USPACOM HONOLULU HIRUEKJCS/JOINT STAFF WASHDCRUEIDN/DNI WASHINGTON DCRHEHNSC/NSC WASHDCRUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHDCRUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 7446","C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 03 NEW DELHI 000017
E.O. 12958: DECL: 01/05/2019 TAGS: PREL, PGOV, PTER, MOPS, PK, IN SUBJECT: MENON PRESENTS EVIDENCE OF PAKISTAN INVOLVEMENT IN MUMBAI ATTACKS TO AMBASSADORS
REF: A. EMAIL WITH SCANNED ATTACHMENTS SENT TO SCA 01-05-08 B. NEW DELHI 16
Classified By: Ambassador David Mulford for Reasons 1.4 (B and D)
1. (C) SUMMARY. Foreign Secretary Shivshankar Menon shared with Ambassador Mulford and fourteen other ambassadors January 5 evidence linking the Mumbai terrorist attacks to Pakistan. Menon reported that he had summoned the Pakistan High Commissioner earlier in the day to share a similar, more limited package, but said it was sufficiently detailed to determine whether Pakistan was serious about cooperating. The dossier highlights the Pakistani origin of the attackers and Pakistan-based support for the attacks, but does not explicitly implicate officials of the Pakistan Government or security services. The Government of India appears to have withheld consent to share the results of FBI investigations with Pakistan in order to control precisely what information reaches Islamabad. Today's diplomatic effort appears designed to maximize international pressure on Pakistan, as India seeks to enlist support from those nations who lost citizens in November's attacks in Mumbai. END SUMMARY.
Menon Summons 15 Ambassadors, Pakistan HC - - -
2. (C) Foreign Secretary Shivshankar Menon shared with Ambassador Mulford and fourteen other ambassadors a dossier of evidence linking the Mumbai terrorist attacks to Pakistan. The Indian government individually tailored the dossiers to the fifteen countries with a cover letter from External Affairs Minister Mukherjee to Secretary Rice and Mukherjee's other respective counterparts (ref A). Menon reported that he had summoned the Pakistan High Commissioner earlier in the day to share a similar, more limited package, but said it was sufficiently detailed to determine whether Pakistan was serious about cooperating. The dossier highlights the Pakistani origin of the attackers and Pakistan-based support or the attacks, but does not explicitly implicate officials of the Pakistan Government or security services. (The fourteen other countries represented, whose citizens were among the victims of the Mumbai terrorist attacks, included the UK, Japan, Israel, Australia, Germany, Canada, France, Italy, The Netherlands, Jordan, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, and Mexico.)
3. (C) Menon turned the meeting over to Ministry of External Affairs Joint Secretary (Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Iran) T.C.A. Ragavan, who ran through a 118-slide presentation covering five topics: (1) Evidence (of Pakistani links to the attacks), (2) Pakistan's responses after the Mumbai attacks; (3) Evidence of Pakistani links to terrorism shared with Pakistan from August 2004 to November 2008; (4) Pakistan's obligations (under international law); and 5) What Pakistan should do (ref A).
Menon: Not Business As Usual - - -
4. (C) In his remarks following the presentation, Menon's bottom line was that there could not be ""business as usual"" until Pakistan investigated the evidence provided and takes credible action to prevent future attacks. The Indian government had ""consciously refrained"" from imposing a long list of demands or going public with this evidence, but Pakistan's actions thus far inspired ""little reason to hope for a constructive reply."" Pakistan's claims that it cannot extradite its citizens to India is tantamount to ""immunity from justice for Pakistanis who committee crimes in India."" The Indian government has ""no quarrel"" with the people of Pakistan and has not impeded travel, trade, or other people-to-people contact as was done in 2002. Menon was unsure of the capacity of the Pakistani civilian government, NEW DELHI 00000017 002.2 OF 003 but said it was ""inconceivable"" that the Mumbai attacks could have been executed without the knowledge or assistance of ""the real power in Pakistan."" Lashkar-e-Tayiba is not just a threat to India; it trained many more terrorists than took part in the Mumbai attacks and champions an ideology that inspires activists from Sudan to South East Asia.
Q&A: No Excuse Not To Cooperate - - -
5. (C) In the question and answer period following the presentation, Menon elaborated on a variety of issues. The Australian Ambassador probed Menon on the joint investigative mechanism proposed by Pakistan. ""The fundamental problem is that Pakistan continues to deny any links to the attacks,"" according to Menon, ""so what would be the point of a joint mechanism as long as they deny there is anything there to investigate?"" Menon said India would investigate in India, and vice versa, but India had now provided the results of its investigation and it was up to Pakistan to cooperate. He observed, for instance, that Pakistan claimed to ban Jamat-ud-Dawa (JuD), but the organization continues to update its web site There is, according to Menon, ""no evidence that Pakistan is a reliable partner."" Menon declined to speculate about how to strengthen the hand of the civilian government in Pakistan, adding, ""I wish you the best of luck.""
6. (C) In response to the French Ambassador, Menon indicated that the SAARC Regional Convention on Suppression of Terrorism required no further bilateral mechanism to be operative and that Pakistan had ratified it. In fact, it was specifically designed to overcome difficulties in concluding bilateral extradition agreements. He revealed that there was some debate within the Indian government about whether the attack was meant to be a suicide operation, saying for instance that the GPS devices plotted a route for the return trip. The Indian government had not yet made a determination on further multilateral strategies following the UNSCR 1267 designation of JuD.
7. (C) Menon clarified for UK Ambassador that the Indian government had made general demands for investigative assistance from Pakistan, but no specific requests, for instance, to interview particular individuals. Nor had India made significant progress on tracking the financing for the operation. Menon shared that he personally felt ""the key is Kasab,"" adding that as long as Pakistan continued to deny his citizenship it had no reason to admit there was anything to investigate there. Regarding the role of Saudi Arabia and China in influencing Pakistan, Menon said, ""They have a choice to make as well.""
Q&A: Taking It One Step At A Time - - -
8. (C) In response to questions from the ambassador from the Dutch Ambassador and Ambassador Mulford, Menon declined to speculate about next steps, saying, ""We'll take it as it comes, gauge the Pakistan response, proceed to the next step, and keep you informed."" Menon claimed the Indian elections did not affect the government's calculus, citing the nonpartisan spirit of national unity exhibited in the December session of Parliament. He stressed that the Indian government had been very careful to avoid timelines, saying, ""We do not want to tie ourselves to particular responses on a timeline."" Menon added, ""I am quite amazed we have waited this long to release this evidence. You know the depth of feeling here. So far the more sensible counsel has prevailed, but continued lack of action and denial from Pakistan cannot be tolerated forever.""
9. (C) Ambassador Mulford asked Menon for India's views on policies toward Pakistan beyond encouraging evidence sharing, such as the planned donor conference and Pakistan's IMF loan.
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Menon replied that the official answer was that India seeks a peaceful, stable Pakistan, but added that Pakistan is comprised of many power centers loosely coordinated. He shared, ""We need to ask ourselves what we have done with Pakistan over the years and what it has resulted in, because old habits will yield the same results."" ""This is a defining moment,"" he cautioned, ""People here will judge our relationship with countries based on how they respond.""
Comment - - -
10. (C) The Government of India appears to have withheld consent to share the results of FBI investigations in Mumbai with Pakistan in order to turn over the information as it deemed appropriate. As reported ref B, the Indians want to control precisely what information reaches Islamabad. Today's diplomatic effort appears designed to maximize international pressure on Pakistan, as India seeks to enlist support from those nations who lost citizens in the November attacks in Mumbai.