26/11 Mumbai attacks mastermind Hafiz Saeed was freed from a Pakistan jail this month (AFP)
Mastermind of the 26/11 Mumbai attacks Hafiz Saeed, who was released from house arrest
in Pakistan on November 24, would have to wait for his name to be removed from the United Nation's list of designated terrorists till the world body gets an ombudsperson to hear his petition.
A request to delist a person from the list of terrorists is considered by an independent ombudsperson, who then gives a recommendation to the UN Security Council.
No one has been appointed UN ombudsperson since the last officer Catherine Marchi-Uhel left office on August 7 this year.
The terrorist group Lashkar-e-Taiba's chief Hafiz Saeed was named a global terrorist by the UN Security Council's Al Qaeda Sanctions Committee on December 10, 2008. The US too has designated him a global terrorist
and has announced a reward of $10 million for information leading to his arrest and conviction.
The terrorist's Lahore-based attorney has said that he has filed a petition
in the UN seeking removal of his name from the list of designated terrorists on the ground that none of the allegations against him has been proved in Pakistani courts.
Hafiz Saeed is also chief of the Jammat-ud-Dawa, the political arm of his terrorist group LeT.
Though a new ombudsperson has not been appointed yet, the office remains operational and is accepting new delisting requests during the transition period, the UN said in a statement on its website.
A number of calls to the office of the ombudsperson and emails sent by news agency Press Trust of India went unanswered. The office of the ombudsperson of the Security Council's 1267 Committee says there is one case pending with the committee, besides that of Hafiz Saeed.
LeT was designated a terrorist organisation by the UN on May 2, 2005. India has repeatedly asked Pakistan to reinvestigate the Mumbai terror attacks case and also demanded trial of Hafiz Saeed and other terrorists, apart from giving evidence to Islamabad.
India had expressed outrage over the decision of Pakistan's judicial board to release Hafiz Saeed, calling it an attempt by Pakistan to mainstream terrorists and a reflection of its continuing support to non-state actors.
Over 160 people died in the 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks.