Pakistan Court orders release of 26/11 Mumbai terror attack mastermind Hafiz Saeed

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The Lahore High Court today ordered the release of Jamaat-ud-Dawa (JuD) chief Hafiz Saeed, who has been under house arrest since January this year.

The provincial government of Pakistan's eastern province of Punjab had asked for an extension to Saeed's detention but the request was turned down by the court, prosecutor Sattar Sahil told Reuters.

Directing the Pakistan government to release Saeed, the board said, "The government is ordered to release JuD chief Hafiz Saeed if he is not wanted in any other case".

"The review board looking in to the case. has refused to extend his house arrest as the government failed to provide any evidence against the charges", a spokesman for the party, Ahmed Nadeen said.

Saeed has been under house arrest since January 31 and will walk free only 48 hours ahead of 26/11 Anniversary.

The board's order paves the way for Saeed's release.

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The government had informed the judicial body that Saeed's release could lead to imposition of global sanctions on Pakistan.

A Pakistani court yesterday ordered the release of one of the alleged masterminds of the 2008 Mumbai attacks which killed more than 160 people, after months of USA pressure on Islamabad over its alleged support for militants.

"The representatives and officials of the government and ministries were all saying that I should not be freed but the judges heard all their arguments and set them aside and ordered my release", he said.

During the last hearing, the government while seeking extension in the detention orders had argued that Saeed could not be released because the move would result in financial sanctions and a halt in foreign funding to the country.

Following the decision, Mastermind of Mumbai 26/11 attack will be freed tomorrow.

Kasab was executed after a court found him guilty and handed down death sentence.

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