Hafiz Saeed says his fate in the hands of God, not America
“I move about like an ordinary person — that’s my style,” said Saeed, a burly 64-year-old, reclining on a bolster. “My fate is in the hands of God, not America.”
Saeed is the founder, and is still widely believed to be the true leader, of Lashkar-e-Toiba, the militant group that carried out the 2008 attacks in Mumbai, in which more than 160 people, including six Americans, were killed. The United Nations has placed him on a terrorist list and imposed sanctions on his group. But few believe he will face trial any time soon in a country that maintains a perilous ambiguity toward jihadi militancy, casting a benign eye on some groups, even as it battles others that attack the state.
Saeed’s very public life seems more than just an act of mocking defiance against the Obama administration and its bounty, analysts say. As American troops prepare to leave Afghanistan, Lashkar is at a crossroads, and its fighters’ next move —whether to focus on fighting the West, disarm and enter the political process, or return to battle in Kashmir - will depend largely on Saeed.
At his Lahore compound — a fortified house, office and mosque — Saeed is shielded not only by his
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