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BBC obtains Pakistan's charges against Mumbai accused

An Indian soldier aims his rifle outside the Taj Mahal hotel in Mumbai, 29 November
The attacks strained relations between India and Pakistan

The BBC has obtained details of charges that Pakistan has filed against the alleged mastermind of last year's attacks in the Indian city of Mumbai.

The charges, filed in a Rawalpindi court, accuse Zaki-ur-Rehman Lakhvi and six others of disrupting "normal civil life" in India and Pakistan.

The men, who have already pleaded not guilty, are also accused of "disrupting trade" between the neighbours.

The charges were laid on 25 November, but full details were not provided.

The trial is being held behind closed doors in an anti-terrorism court set up inside a high-security prison.

A total of 174 people, including nine gunmen, were killed in the attacks in November 2008.

The attacks led India to suspend peace talks with Pakistan. In July, Indian PM Manmohan Singh said talks would not restart until the Mumbai attacks suspects were brought to justice.

The only surviving attacker, Mohammad Ajmal Qasab, is currently facing trial in India.

After initially denying it, Islamabad acknowledged that Mr Qasab was a Pakistani national.

Pakistani security forces say they are still searching for more suspects, but India has previously blamed the Pakistani authorities themselves for aiding the Mumbai attackers.

'Disrupted'

The 10-page charging document obtained by the BBC lists the case as State versus Hammad Amin Sadiq etc.

"By your aforesaid acts of terrorism, you disrupted the trade between two neighbouring countries, that is Pakistan, India and also disrupted normal civil life of people of the two countries..." the document says.

Mr Sadiq, Mr Lakhvi and the other five accused are described as "active members of defunct proscribed organisation Lashkar-e-Taiba", who set up militant training camps in Yousaf Goth, Karachi and Mirpur Sakroo in Sindh to train the Mumbai attackers under the operational command of Mr Lakhvi.

Zaki-ur-Rehman Lakhvi is accused of being the head of the banned militant group Lashkar-e-Taiba and, according to the prosecution, the mastermind of the Mumbai attacks.

Hamid Amin Sadiq is alleged to be one of the main handlers of the attackers and the operational head, according to Pakistan's Interior Minister Rehman Malik.

The other accused named in the document are Mazhar Iqbal alias Abu Al-Qama, Abdul Wajid alias Zarar Shah, Shahid Jamil Riaz, Jamil Ahmed and Muhammad Younas Anjum.

They are accused of arranging money "for preparation and carrying out of Mumbai attacks" and satellite phone sim cards for Mr Qasab and the other nine gunmen.

The seven accused trained, instructed, provided funds and hideouts, rented houses in Karachi and finally launched the 10 men used in the Mumbai attacks, the document said.

These are the first people the Pakistani courts have indicted in connection with the Mumbai attacks.

The indictments came amid renewed pressure from India for Pakistan to do more to speed up the legal process, and convict those responsible for planning the attacks.

It is one year since the incident, and the strain in diplomatic relations is still, very much, being felt, correspondents say.



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