By Saeed Shah
ISLAMABAD, Pakistan — Pakistani officials took what could be a decisive step forward in the country’s fight against Islamic extremism Thursday, publicly admitting for the first time that the Mumbai terrorist attacks were planned in and launched from Pakistan.
“Some part of the conspiracy has taken place in Pakistan,” Rehman Malik, the top security official in the Interior Ministry, told a news conference in Islamabad. “I want to assure the international community, I want to assure all those who have been victims of terrorism, that we mean business.”
Before the announcement, Pakistani officials had denied that there was any proof that its citizens were involved in the November Mumbai bombings, which killed some 170 people and pushed nuclear-armed Pakistan and India to the verge of war. Indian officials Thursday promptly welcomed the Pakistani admission as a “positive development.”
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