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Alleged revenge attack hospitalizes Pakistani inmate in India

May 03, 2013|By Emily Alpert
  • Pakistani prisoner Sanaullah Haq, attacked in an Indian prison, is carried to an ambulance in Jammu.
Pakistani prisoner Sanaullah Haq, attacked in an Indian prison, is carried… (AFP/Getty Images )

A Pakistani prisoner in a Kashmir jail was attacked and suffered serious head injuries Friday morning, one day after outrage erupted in India over the death of an Indian prisoner in Pakistan.

The Pakistani Foreign Ministry said the attack was “obvious retaliation” for the killing of Sarabjit Singh, an Indian inmate who died Thursday after being assaulted behind bars.

The ministry called on the Indian government to ensure that the Pakistani prisoner got “the best medical treatment available” and urged Indian authorities to investigate and punish his attackers.

Indian media reported that the injured inmate, Sanaullah Haq, had fallen into a coma at a Jammu hospital before being flown to another medical facility in Chandigarh.

The attacks have ramped up tensions between India and Pakistan, which have been trying to rebuild ties after resuming peace talks nearly two years ago.

Protests erupted in India after the death of Singh, whose family maintained that he was wrongfully convicted of spying and carrying out a string of deadly bombings in Pakistan.

Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh called the slain prisoner “a brave son of India” and complained that after the attack nearly a week earlier, the Pakistani government had not heeded Indian officials' request to return him home for medical treatment.

After Sanaullah Haq was attacked Friday, the Pakistani government likewise pushed for him to be returned for care, and lodged a protest with an Indian official, the Associated Press of Pakistan reported.

Pakistan's high commissioner reportedly called for India to release scores of other Pakistani prisoners, telling the News International that they had already served their sentences.

The Indian Ministry of External Affairs called the Friday attack a “regrettable incident” and promised that “the guilty will be punished,” according to a statement published in Indian media. It proposed that representatives of the two countries meet and determine measures to put a stop to such attacks.

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