SRILANKA TODAY

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Saturday, November 29, 2008

Presidnet Zardari calls Prime Minister Manmohan, assures Pakistan’s cooperation

Presidnet Zardari calls Prime Minister Manmohan, assures Pakistan’s cooperation




President Asif Ali Zardari called the Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on telephone Friday and condemned the Mumbai terrorist attacks. Talking to the Indian Prime Minister President Asif Ali Zardari said that he was appalled and shocked over the tragedy, which he said had opened up his own wounds as Shaheed Mohtarma Bhutto had also fallen prey to the militants and terrorists.

He said that non state actors wanted to force upon the governments their own agenda but they must not be allowed to succeed.

The President said, “We should not fall into the trap of the militants.”

The President said the government will cooperate with India in exposing and apprehending the culprits and the master minds behind the attacks.

President Asif Ali Zardari also conveyed to the Indian Prime Minister his heartfelt condolences and of the people of Pakistan over the loss of innocent lives in the attacks and urged him to convey his feelings to the members of the bereaved families.

Sourse: High CVommission of Colombo

President Zardari rejects claims of Pakistan’s involvement in Mumbai terrorist attacks

President Asif Ali Zardari rejecting the claims of Pakistan’s involvement in Mumbai terrorist attacks, said Friday Pakistan could neither gain anything not the democratic government believed in such tactics.“Currently, India was also facing security challenges on domestic front”, the President said while talking to German Ambassador Dr. Michael Koch, who called on him here.

President Zardari condemned the incident and informed the Germany envoy that he had spoken to Mrs. Sonia Gandhi and Dr. Manmohan Singh over telephone to offer Pakistan’s assistance in the investigations, according to a foreign office statement issue here.

The German Ambassador appreciated Pakistan’s efforts and sincerity towards normalizing relations with India and in this regard referred to the President’s courageous interview to the Indian media as well as the mature and constructive statement of Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi, who is in India, in the wake of Mumbai terrorist incidents.

The President informed about Pakistan’s efforts towards building bridges with Afghanistan and in this regard highlighted his upcoming visit to Afghanistan and visit to Turkey to attend the trilateral Summit.

The President and the German envoy exchanged views on the state of bilateral relations, terrorism and extremism in the region and Pakistan‑India relations.

In the context of terrorism, the President reminded that the roots of the current situation lay in the efforts of some countries to militarily defeat the Soviet forces in Afghanistan without an exit strategy.

He emphatically mentioned that the germs of terrorist elements were not produced in security agencies’ labs in Pakistan but they were created overseas and transferred to this region.

The President expressed profound gratitude for Germany’s support at the Friends of Democratic Pakistan Forum, IMF’s financial plan for Pakistan and the understanding that German Government has displayed towards Pakistan’s difficulties.

He mentioned that opting for the IMF package was an extremely difficult decision for the government under the prevailing circumstances. The people of Pakistan have high hopes with the democratic government and needed something tangible for themselves, he added.

The President said that he though inherited the economic problems but these were now his problems and he was fully resolved to solve them.

He mentioned that unlike other parties the Pakistan People’s Party was the voice of the voiceless people, which constituted 86% of Pakistan’s population.

People are in dire need of instant gratification from democracy which he realizes and was fully committed to bring prosperity to the people. His initiative of Friends of Democratic Pakistan Forum (FDPF) is a manifestation of his efforts to that end.

“In his concept, FDPF is to become a more encompassing forum”, the President said and added it is his intension to get India and some other regional countries also on board in the larger interest of security, stability and prosperity of the region.

The President also informed about his plan of national reconciliation, which included his interactions with the people of FATA and Balochistan. He was confident to achieve this objective.

Pakistan to send ISI chief to India


Pakistan to send ISI chief to India

Pakistan has nothing to hide, says Pakistan PM Gilani

“Preliminary investigations point towards Karachi”

Prime Minister Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani on Friday extended Pakistan’s support to India in jointly combating extremism and terrorism and offered to send its intelligence chief to help with Mumbai investigation. Prime Minister Gilani telephoned his Indian counterpart Dr. Manmohan Singh and strongly condemned the acts of terrorism in Mumbai.

The Prime Minister expressed sympathy on behalf of the people and government of Pakistan with Indian Prime Minister, Congress leader Ms. Sonia Gandhi, people of India and the families of those who lost their near and dear ones in “the unfortunate incidents of barbarism.”

Gilani termed the incident “inhuman and condemnable from all aspects.”

He said Pakistan too was a victim of terrorism and appreciated the fact that Indian Prime Minister was the first one to telephone him after the Marriott hotel blast.

“Dr. Singh told the Prime Minister that preliminary reports point towards Karachi and stressed the need for increased intelligence sharing and cooperation in order to evolve a joint strategy against terrorism and extremism,” a press release from the PM House said.

Dr. Singh requested the Prime Minster to send DG ISI to India for exchange of information in this regard.

The Prime Minister accepted the request and said that after working out modalities by both the governments, the ISI chief will visit India at the earliest, the press release said.

The Prime Minister also extended his government’s full support for jointly combating extremism and terrorism and also offered help in investigating the incident.

Inter-Services Intelligence chief coming to India at the earliest

Inter-Services Intelligence chief coming to India at the earliest

In a move that unambiguously signalled its eagerness to defuse the tensions with India over the Mumbai terror attacks, Pakistan on Friday took the extraordinary decision to send the head of its Inter-Services Intelligence to New Delhi at the earliest for “an exchange of information” about the attacks.

The Director-General of the ISI is a serving Lieutenant-General in the Pakistan Army. The office is presently held by Ahmed Shuja Pasha.

He took charge of the ISI last month after a reshuffle in the top echelons of the Army. His visit would be the first by the head of Pakistan’s top intelligence agency to what it has historically projected as dushman humsaaya, Urdu for “enemy neighbour.”

Endgame in Mumbai, death toll could be 200

Endgame in Mumbai, death toll could be 200


Even as the special forces and the police succeeded in freeing 200 people who were holed up inside the Oberoi and Trident Hotels for the third day, four Israeli and United States nationals held hostage in a south Mumbai Jewish religious centre were found dead when commandos stormed the building late on Friday evening.

Pakistan Foreign Minister Qureshi reiterates Pakistan’s cooperation to investigate Mumbai terror attacks

Pakistan Foreign Minister Qureshi reiterates Pakistan’s cooperation to investigate Mumbai terror attacks

Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi on Friday reiterated Pakistan’s cooperation to India for investigating the Mumbai terror incidents.Addressing at India Women Press Corps here Friday night, he said Pakistan had offered cooperation to India at all levels including sharing of information between intelligence agencies of both the countries to counter menace of terrorism.

He said it is a difficult moment for India but there is a need to avoid blame game of the past. “We should demonstrate statesmanship to wriggle out of this situation,” he added.

Qureshi said both countries had passed sixty years in acrimony and confrontation which caused loss to both countries.

Expressing sympathies on behalf of the people and Government of Pakistan to Indian side, he said Pakistan wanted to strengthen institutional arrangement of anti‑terrorism mechanism by sharing the information.

Pakistan was ready to cooperate with India

It had also offered establishing hotlines between Chiefs of Intelligence Agencies and National Security Advisers as terrorism was not a Pakistan’s problem only. “It is regional and global curse,” he added.

Foreign Minister said : “In this situation, I understand compulsions of the Indian government including holding elections and others but at this stage we should not give value judgment or jump to the conclusions,”.

“We should not give knee jerk reactions,” he said adding in the past insinuations on Samjhauta Express blasts were also witnessed. Later, an Indian army serving officer Lt. Col. Shrikant Purohit was named as one of the accused in the Samjhauta blasts case.

He said cities of Pakistan also witnessed to such barbaric acts and Pakistan was dealing them on daily basis.

Negative elements were present in both the countries, he said adding there were incidents of terrorism in Pakistan, but Islamabad did not involve in blame game.

He said present elected government had adopted a zero‑tolerance policy towards these elements and Pakistan’s security forces were engaged in eliminating them.

To a question on Indian Prime Minister’s request to send ISI Chief to India to share information on Mumbai blasts, he said Pakistan was ready to cooperate with India in this regard.

He said he would discuss with President Asif Zardari about this matter and whatever was required, would be considered.He said India could trust Pakistan and Islamabad was keen to move forward sincerely in sharing information on this account.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Pakistan president Zardari calls Sonia,condemns terrorism mumbai

Pakistan President calls Sonia, condemns terrorism in mumbai




ISLAMABAD, Nov 27 (APP): pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari on Thursday telephoned Congress leader Sonia Gandhi to condemn the terrorist attacks in Bombay(Mumbai) that killed scores and injured hundreds.The President termed the killing of the innocent a detestable act and condemned the attacks in strongest possible terms.

The President said militancy and extremism in all its forms and manifestations had to be eliminated and all countries need to cooperate with each other in this regard.

The President asked Sonia Gandhi to convey his grief and sorrow to the people of India and to the families of those who lost their loved ones.

Pakistan Presidnet and PM Strongly condemn Mumbai terror attack

President, PM strongly condemn Mumbai terror incidents




ISLAMABAD, Nov 27 (APP): President Asif Ali Zardari and Prime Minister Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani on Thursday strongly condemned the terrorist attacks in the Indian city of Mumbai . President Zardari and Prime Minister Gilani in their separate condolence messages addressed to their Indian counterparts expressed shock and grief over the loss of lives in last night’s terrorist attacks.

“On behalf of the people and Government of Pakistan and on my own behalf, I wish to express our deep shock and sorrow at last night’s terrorist attacks in Mumbai”, the President said in a message addressed to Indian President Pratibha Devisingh Patil.

He said, “the people of Pakistan join you in mourning the loss of so many precious lives. We offer our heartfelt sympathies and condolences to the family members of all those who have lost their lives or have been injured in these incidents.”

President Zardari said Pakistan strongly condemns these acts of terrorism. “Terrorism is a scourge of humanity, which needs to be rooted out”, he added.

Prime Minister Gilani in his message addressed to Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said he was shocked to learn about the deadly terrorist attacks in Mumbai last night which have caused enormous loss of lives.

“Please accept our deepest condolences on these dastardly attacks” he said and added “such acts of violence and terrorism are totally unacceptable in any civilized society.”

The Prime Minister said the Government and people of Pakistan unequivocally and strongly condemn these heinous acts of terrorism.

“Please accept, Excellency, the assurances of my highest consideration”, he added.

Sourse: High Commission Office of Colombo


Canadian Authorities stop LTTE Suicide Bombers' Day celebrations - Toronto

Canadian Authorities stop LTTE Suicide Bombers' Day celebrations - Toronto

Canadian authorities acting on information provided by Sri Lankan Tamil expatriates in Toronto have stopped the main Suicide Bombers' Day celebrations organized by the LTTE supporters Nov 27TH MORNING.

According to a reliable source in Canada, members of the terrorist outfit have organized the event in grand scale at Parsons Convention Centre at Brampton, Toronto. The event has been scheduled to be commenced around 7 AM (Canadian Time) with the participant listening to the annual suicide bombers day speech by terrorist chief V. Prbhakaran, the sources added.

"The organizers have put up huge video screens, heavy sound systems, and a satellite connection to air the terrorist leaders' speech", our source said.

The sources added that the organizers have expected a couple of thousands of Tamils to participate for the event.

India has no intention of lifting the ban on Sri Lanka's Tamil Tigers, official sources said Friday.

India has no intention of lifting the ban on Sri Lanka's Tamil Tigers, official sources said Friday.

The sources were responding to a plea to this effect that Velupillai Prabhakaran, the founder leader of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), made Thursday evening as part of his annual speech.

The sources, speaking to IANS on the condition of anonymity, said the question of acceding to the request did not arise since the ban, first imposed in 1992, had been extended for another two years only now.

India was the first country to outlaw the LTTE, which is fighting for a separate homeland to be carved out of Sri Lanka's northeast, following the assassination of former prime minister Rajiv Gandhi. Since then, several countries have followed suit.

In his Nov 27 address from an undisclosed destination, Prabhakaran said that he wanted to"build a constructive relationship" with India, which he described as a "superpower".

Chennai to hold the second cricket Test against England instead of Mumbai (4:00 pm)

Chennai to hold the second cricket Test against England instead of Mumbai (4:00 pm)

Supreme Court directs President to takeover Petroleum Ministry


Supreme Court directs President to takeover Petroleum Ministry

The Supreme Court today (Nov. 28th) directed President Mahinda Rajapaksa to takeover the Petroleum Ministry from Minister A. H. M. Fowzie and to consider appointing another minister.

The SC also ordered the immediate suspension of Asantha de Mel as chairman of Ceylon Petroleum Corporation.

A three-member bench headed by Chief Justice Sarath N. Silva considered petitions filed by chief incumbent of Nalandarama Vihara, Nugegoda Ven. Theeniyawala Palitha Thera, Laugfs Gas chairman W.K.L. Wegodapitiya, UNP MP Ravi Karunanayake and legal coordinator of 'Corruption Watch' attorney Ravi Jayawardena.

The petitioners claimed their fundamental rights have been violated due to the non-reduction of local fuel prices in line with world market prices.

The SC directed the CPC to suspend controversial hedging payments to banks until a probe by the finance board of Central Bank into the matter is over.

The court also ordered the Treasury to submit a report within a week on the possibility of reducing local fuel prices.

The SC blamed authorities for having appointed an unqualified person, who had even not passed the G.C.E. Advanced Level examination to a responsible position like the CPC chairmanship, and said the ministers who had protected such a person should be exposed.

Ranil lauds India's conduct over terror attacks

Ranil lauds India's conduct over terror attacks

Much can be learnt from the conduct of the Indian government, which left no scope for an outburst of racism, opposition leader, Ranil Wickremesinghe said.

Speaking in Parliament today (Nov. 28th), Mr. Wickremesinghe lauded the Indian government on its conduct in the aftermath of the attacks without letting extremists to go on rampage, and strongly condemned the terrorist act.

He also emphasized the need for political solutions to defeat terrorism.

Minister of Foreign Affairs, Rohitha Bogollagama said that it was extremely important for the government and the opposition to join hands in order to

Vaiko urges Delhi to help establish Eelam

Vaiko urges Delhi to help establish Eelam

India's MDMK leader Vaiko has urged the New Delhi central government to help establish an independent Tamil Eelam, saying it was not a threat to India but in fact a vital form of security, said Tamilnet. He was delivering the keynote address at Remembrance Day ceremony, attended by around 40,000 people, in London yesterday (Nov. 27th).

Whilst the Tamils in Sri Lanka are allies of India, the Sinhalese are hostile to India, he said, adding that a Sinhala-dominated Sri Lanka would certainly be a threat to India, said the website.

Several British MPs also addressed the event.

We wish to stop the war – Prabha


We wish to stop the war – Prabha
Extends hand of friendship to international community


Tiger leader Vellupillai Prabhakaran yesterday said the LTTE wanted to stop the war and seek a peaceful resolution to the national question of the Tamil people.

Prabhakaran in his annual Heroes’ Day address, also extended a hand of friendship to the international community especially India and invited the countries that have banned the Tigers to understand the deep aspirations and friendly overtures of the Tamil people, to remove the LTTE ban and to recognize the LTTE struggle.


The land of Tamil Eelam is confronted with an intense war as never before. Rearing its head in different parts of Wanni, the war is gathering momentum. As the Sinhala state is committed to a military solution, the war is becoming intense and widespread’, the LTTE leader V.Prabhakaran says in his Hero’s Day speech on today

The full text of LTTE's translation of the Tamil speech of Prabhakaran follows:

http://www.lankaenews.com/English/news.php?id=6753fficial

Mumbai hotel 'under army control'

Mumbai hotel 'under army control'

One of the luxury hotels taken over by gunmen in Mumbai is back under the control of the authorities, India's elite commando chief says.

JK Dutt said commandos had killed two militants at the Oberoi-Trident hotel. Police found 24 bodies there, shortly after 93 guests and staff were freed.

Gun battles continue at the Taj Mahal Palace hotel and a Jewish centre, where hostages are still being held.

India's foreign minister said "elements with links to Pakistan" were involved.

Pranab Mukherjee added that details could not be given at this time - this was only from initial evidence.

Commandos prepare to attack militants from the rooftop of Chabad House in Mumbai
Commandos are moving down through Nariman House
But his Pakistani counterpart, Shah Mehmood Qureshi, urged India not to bring politics into the issue.

"This is a collective issue. We are facing a common enemy and we should join hands to defeat the enemy," he said.

Earlier, the Indian navy took control of two Pakistani merchant navy ships and began questioning their crews after witnesses said some of the militants came ashore on small speedboats.

At least 130 people are reported to have been killed since the attacks began late Wednesday, but that figure is expected to rise as more bodies are found.

'Bodies in hall'

Mr Dutt, the director-general of India's National Security Guard, said the Oberoi-Trident was "under our control".

"We have killed two terrorists today," he said. "There was lots of firing, they also lobbed hand grenades. Some of them are unexploded, we are going to defuse them - you may hear some sound of explosions."

Earlier, the army said at least one gunman with "two or more hostages" remained in the Taj Mahal Palace hotel.

More than 100 commandos have gone into the Taj Mahal and gunfire and explosions continue to be heard, say BBC correspondents outside the hotel.

POPE BENEDICT XVI heartfelt condolences to the families


POPE BENEDICT XVI heartfelt condolences to the families

The Holy Father [conveys] his heartfelt condolences to the families of those who have lost their lives in these brutal attacks.
His Holiness urgently appeals for an end to all acts of terrorism, which gravely offend the human family and severely destabilise the peace and solidarity needed to build a civilization worthy of mankind's noble vocation to love God and neighbour

UN SECRETARY GENERAL CONDEMNS

SPOKESMAN FOR BAN KI-MOON, UN SECRETARY GENERAL

The secretary general condemns the rash of shootings and blasts in Mumbai today, which killed and wounded a large number of people. Such violence is totally unacceptable.

The secretary general reiterates his conviction that no cause or grievance can justify indiscriminate attacks against civilians. He calls for the perpetrators to be brought to justice swiftly.

[He] sends his deepest sympathies to the families of the victims and the wounded and expresses his solidarity with the people and government of India.

Manmohan and Soniya visit to the hospital

Manmohan and Soniya visit to the hospital




Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi at the JJ hospital to visit the victims of terror attacks in Mumbai on Thursday Night. Photo: PTI

World leaders strongly condemn terrorist attacks in Mumbai in India.


Mumbai shootings: Reaction in quotes



There has been widespread international condemnation of the series of shootings across the Indian city of Mumbai in which more than 100 people have been killed and many more than 300 injured.

World leaders strongly cond

emn terrorist attacks in Mumbai in India.

PAKISTANI PRESIDENT ASIF ALI ZARDARI

The attacks in Mumbai have claimed many innocent victims and remind us, yet again, of the threat we face from violent extremists.

Our thoughts are with the families and friends of those killed and injured. Pakistan and India will continue their joint struggles to counter the actions of terrorists.

PAKISTANI PRIME MINISTER YOUSUF R

AZA GILANI

I condemn these attacks strongly.

We need to take strict measures to eradicate terrorism and extremism from the region while continuing with concerted efforts to make it a peaceful place to live.

WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY DANA PERINO

President Bush offers his condolences to the Indian people and the families of the innocent civilians killed and injured in the attacks in Mumbai, In

dia.

The United States condemns this terrorist attack and we will continue to stand with the people of India in this time of tragedy.

This afternoon, the White House National Security Council convened officials from counter-terrorism and intelligence agencies as well as the state

and defence departments.

The US government continues to monitor the situation, including the safety and security of our citizens, and stands ready to assist and support the Indian government.

BROOKE ANDERSON, SPOKESMAN FOR BARACK OBAMA

President-elect Obama strongly condemns today's terrorist attacks in Mumbai, and his thoughts and prayers are with the victims, their families, and the people of India.

These co-ordinated attacks on innocent civilians demonstrate the grave and urgent threat of terrorism.

The United States must continue to strengthen our partnerships with India and nations around the world to root out and destro

y terrorist networks.

We stand with the people of India, whose democracy will prove far more resilient than the hateful ideology that led to these attacks.

GODON BROWN, BRITISH PRIME MINISTER


These outrageous attacks in Mumbai will be met with a vigorous response.

I have sent a message to [Indian] Prime Minister [Manmohan] Singh that the UK stands solidly with his government as the

y respond, and to offer all necessary help.

Urgent action is underway to offer every possible protection to British citizens in the region.

QIN GANG, CHINESE FOREIGN MINISTRY SPOKESMAN

China always opposes terrorist attacks of any kind, and we express our condolences to the victims.

DMITRY MEDVEDEV, RUSSIAN PRESIDENT

We are concerned about the loss of life and consider that acts of terrorism of this type are harmful to the whole international order and are a challenge to humanity.

HAMID KARZAI, AFGHAN PRESIDENT

Terrorism is a tyrant enemy which threatens all of humanity and has challenged the region of South Asia.


IFTEKHAR AHMED CHOWDHURY, BANGLADESH FOREIGN MINISTER

We strongly condemned what's happened in Mumbai. These are acts of terrorism, and terrorism serves no purpose. Many innocent people have suffered, many have been killed, others injured and we send them our condolences.

KEVIN RUDD, AUSTRALIAN PRIME MINISTER

Whichever group has perpetrated this attack, they are cowards, absolute cowards, and murderers.

This cowardly attack on India's stability, peace and democracy reminds us all that international terrorism is far from defeated, and that we must all maintain our vigilance.

TARO ASO, JAPANESE PRIME MINISTER

This kind of terrorism is unforgivable, extremely despicable and vicious. I feel strong resentment and deeply condemn it.

Japan is with the Indian people who are fighting against terrorism and we will cooperate with the Indian government.

DAVID MILIBAND, UK FOREIGN SECRETARY

Today's attacks in Mumbai which have claimed many innocent victims, remind us, yet again, of the threat we face from violent extremists.

I condemn these attacks unreservedly. Our thoughts are with the families and friends of those killed and injured.

The UK and India will continue their joint efforts to counter the actions of terrorists.

LAWRENCE CANNON, CANADIAN FOREIGN MINISTER

Canada and India share a commitment to freedom, democracy, human rights and the rule of law. Among our mutual priorities is close cooperation to promote international security and to fight terrorism.


Three Lashkar fidayeen captured

World news
Three Las
hkar fidayeen captured

Maharashtra Police investigators say they have evidence that operatives of the Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Taiba carried out the fidayeen-squad attacks in Mumbai — a charge which, if proven, could have far-reaching consequences for India-Pakistan relations.

Police sources said an injured terrorist captured during the fighting at the Taj Mahal hotel was tentatively identified as Ajmal Amir Kamal, a resident of Faridkot, near Multan, in Pakistan’s Punjab province.

India PM address the nation

India PM address the nation

Asserting that the group which carried out the terrorist assault on Mumbai is “based outside the country,” Prime Minister Manmohan Singh warned the neighbouring countries that “there would be a cost if suitable measures are not taken by them” to prevent use of their territory for attacks against India.

In an address to the nation on Thursday evening, he talked tough. “We are not prepared to countenance a situation in which the safety and security of our citizens can be violated with impunity by terrorists.”

Dr. Singh promised the nation that the strongest possible measures would be taken to ensure that there was no repetition of such terrorist acts. “We are determined to take whatever measures are necessary to ensure the safety and security of our citizens.”

Indicating that his government may be finally overcoming its diffidence in meeting head-on the terrorist challenge, Dr. Singh said: “We will go after these individuals and organisations and make sure that every perpetrator, organiser and supporter of terror, whatever his affiliations or religion may be, pays a heavy price for these cowardly and horrific acts against our people.”

For good measure, the Prime Minister also suggested that his government would be prepared to use the National Security Act, as well as tighten laws to the disadvantage of the terrorist. He suggested that a federal investigation agency be “immediately set up.”

The Prime Minister sent out a stern message to anyone wanting to fish in Mumbai’s troubled waters and warned that “all concerned authorities are on alert and will deal sternly with any attempts to disturb the public order.”

Dr. Singh paid a pointed tribute to the “courage and patriotism” of the chief of the Maharashtra Anti-Terrorism Squad, Hemant Karkare, and his men who took the terrorists’ bullet.

U.S. offers assistance

U.S. offers assistance
Several countries including the U.S., Britain, Japan, Canada and Kazakhstan have condemned the killing of civilians in Mumbai with Presidents of some countries sending in their condolences.

Secretary-General of the Arab League and Foreign Ministers of Oman, Israel, Australia and Canada called up External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee expressing condemnation, condolences and solidarity.

U.K. intelligence suspects Al-Qaeda hand

U.K. intelligence suspects Al-Qaeda hand

British intelligence agencies suspect Al-Qaeda is behind the Mumbai attacks, pointing out that taking Western hostages fits in with the pattern of its previous operations, especially the 2002 Bali bombings when Al-Qaeda-linked terrorists attacked restaurants and clubs frequented by tourists.

Security sources were reported in the British media as saying targeting Western citizens suggested a “typical Al-Qaeda-style activity.” The attacks, seen as the most coordinated operation since 9/11, were believed to be in “retaliation” for recent American air attacks on suspected Al-Qaeda hideouts in the tribal areas on Pakistan-Afghanistan border that reportedly killed a number of leading Al-Qaeda militants and its supporters.

Their brush with death

Their brush with death

Mumbai:Reporting The hindu :

Pix:Hotel taj

Australian tourists David Coker (23) and his partner Katie Anstee (24), who were among the first to come face-to-face with the terrorists in the metropolis’ bar ‘Cafe Leopold’ in Colaba, have described them as young boys.


“They looked just like boys and they were on the rampage — it’s a full-on.”

Mr. David and Ms. Katie arrived in the city to celebrate their graduation.

“We had just sat down for dinner, ordering food, when it seemed fire crackers were bursting all around us and people were screaming,” the duo told Sydney’s Courier-Mail newspaper over telephone.

Ms. Katie was shot in the leg and the bullet broke her femur. Mr. David was grazed by a bullet. He said he had to virtually carry his girlfriend as she couldn’t move.

“We got into a taxi which took us to Bombay Hospital. We were, I think, the first people at the hospital, which is where we are now,” one of them said.

Taj Hotels GM’s wife, sons killed

The wife and two teenaged sons of Taj Hotels General Manager Karambir Kang were killed in the attack.

A relative of the Kangs family, which hails from Mohali, said that while Karambir Kang was not in the hotel on Wednesday night, his wife Neeti and sons Uday (14) and Samar (5) were. — PTI

Nine foreigners were killed and 11 injured

Nine foreigners were killed and 11 injured


Nine foreigners were killed and 11 injured in the multiple terror attacks here, hospital sources said on Thursday. The dead included an Australian, a Briton and a Japanese who have been identified with their nationality while four have been identified without nationality, they said. However, three others were yet to be identified, sources said.

The Italian Foreign Ministry in Rome said among the dead was an Italian national, identifying him as Antonio de Lorenzo.

All Italians who were in hotels or other areas attacked in Mumbai have been contacted “except for one or two people,” the country’s Foreign Minister Franco Frattini told a local TV channel.

Japanese national Tsuda, who was working with Mtsui Marubeni Liquefied Gas Co, died at a hospital after being shot in the leg, stomach and chest at the Trident hotel, the company’s vice-president Hajime Tamaki said in Tokyo. Another of its employees, 44, fell and suffered light injuries as he fled the scene, he said, without identifying the injured by name.

The Australian, Braid Gilbert Taylor (49) was brought dead to St. George Hospital in south Mumbai, sources added.

Among the 60 injured admitted to the Bombay Hospital, 11 foreigners were from different nationalities, Ashish Tiwari of the hospital said.

The injured foreigners are from Australia, U.S., Norway, Spain, Canada and Singapore.

Seven Britons injured

Seven British citizens were injured in the attacks, British High Commissioner in India Sir Richard Stag, said.

Britain would stand shoulder-to-shoulder with India in countering terrorism, he told reporters outside the Taj hotel. Sir Richard described the attacks as “appalling and unjustifiable.”

2 MEPs escape

A London report said two European Parliament members escaped indiscriminate terrorist firing at the Taj hotel, but their whereabouts were not known.

Conservative member Sajjad Karim and Erika Mann, a German Socialist, were part of a delegation of European parliamentarians from a trade committee staying in the Mumbai hotel for meetings ahead of an European Union-India summit.

Karim, 38, spoke to Sky News by mobile phone of his ordeal and attempts to hide from the terrorists in the basement of the hotel until his mobile phone battery ran out.

Mann, 57, was reportedly hiding in the hotel’s kitchen from where she told a colleague who called her on her mobile: “It is too dangerous to talk.”

Mr. Karim told Sky News that he and others had fled from machine-gun fire and had no idea why the hotel was targeted.

A German national has been confirmed killed and several injured in Mumbai, the Foreign Ministry said in Berlin.

“We have to assume that other Germans have been affected,” a spokeswoman said. — Agencies

Japan expresses solidarity

P.S. Suryanarayana reports from Singapore:

Countries across East Asia, especially those whose nationals were killed or wounded or trapped at the sites targeted by terrorists in Mumbai, have expressed solidarity with India and offered anti-terror cooperation. A Japanese businessman was killed on the spot and his associate wounded at a hotel as they were about to check in. Japanese Prime Minister Taro Aso, expressing shock over the carnage, said Japan was “willing to work together with India” in taming terrorists.

Speaking immediately after news trickled in that two Australians were injured, Acting Foreign Minister Simon Crean, described the terrorist strikes as “an appalling assault on the people, and the stability and the democracy in India.”

Security forces hunt gunmen at Mumbai hotel

Security forces hunt gunmen at Mumbai hotel

Indian security forces appear to be gaining control of two Mumbai five-star hotels attacked by gunmen in a wave of violence that has lasted more than 24 hours and killed at least 125 people.
Fresh explosions have been heard at the Taj Mahal hotel, where police are trying to free hostages.

Fresh explosions have been heard at the Taj Mahal hotel, where police are trying to free hostages.

A gunman was killed around 1 a.m. in the Oberoi hotel, where commandos were going room-to-room, trying to flush out attackers and rescue people trapped inside, J.K. Dutt, the director of India's National Security Guard, told CNN-IBN, CNN's sister network in India.

Dutt said he could not say how many gunmen remained in the Oberoi, where hostages have been trickling out of the building for hours.

Security forces used in-house telephones to ask guests holed up in their rooms to switch on lights and open curtains, so that they could provide cover, CNN correspondent Andrew Stevens reported. Video Watch images that will haunt Mumbai »

A siege at the nearby Taj Mahal hotel was over, CNN-IBN reported, but one gunman remained holed up there early Friday morning, Dutt told IBN.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Sri Lanka President condemns terrorist attacks in India

SriLanka President condemns terrorist attacks in India

My Government and I hasten to condemn most vehemently the brutal acts of terrorism that killed more than 100 persons and injured many more in the attacks carried out in the Indian city of Mumbai last night.

Our thoughts to go out to the families of those killed and injured and in these acts of terror; we express our deepest sympathies to the families of the deceased and wish a speedy recovery to those injured, and the safe and early release of hostages.

The attacks on leading hotels, hospitals and public transport in Mumbai, the business and financial capital of India, show that the terrorists are targeting an important sector of the Indian economy, with a view destabilizing democracy in India.

These unfortunate attacks bring into focus the urgent need for concerted action by all countries to eradicate the menace of terrorism, wherever it is, and whoever the leaders and manipulators of such violence may be.

As a country that has suffered the most brutal terrorism for the past three decades, and is currently engaged in determined action to eradicate it from our midst, Sri Lanka stands with the Government and people of India at this time of tragedy and remain firm in our commitment to jointly combat and eradicate terrorism in all its forms from our countries, as well as from the South Asian Region.

Mumbai Terror Attacks

Mumbai Terror Attacks

  • 5 terrorists killed and one captured in Mumbai.
  • Advani to accompany Manmohan Singh during visit to terror-hit Mumbai.
  • Fire breaks out in new Taj hotel building too.


  • Teams of gunmen stormed luxury hotels, a popular restaurant, a crowded train station and a Jewish group's headquarters in India's financial capital, killing at least 101 people, taking Westerners hostage and leaving parts of the city under siege Thursday, police said. A group of suspected Muslim militants claimed responsibility.

    Police and gunmen were exchanging occasional gunfire at two luxury hotels and dozens of people were believed held hostage or trapped in besieged buildings. Pradeep Indulkar, a senior official at the Maharashtra state Home Ministry said 101 people were killed and 287 injured.

    Officials said at least eight militants had also been killed since the overnight attacks that targeted at least 10 separate sites began around 9:30 p.m.

    Read and see More pix and vidios: http://edition.cnn.com/

    http://news.yahoo.com/nphotos/Mumbai-Terror-Attacks/ss/events/wl/112608mumbaiterroris;_ylt=AiMx7QhfReEb7b7xoqPQ6sf9xg8F#photoViewer=/081126/photos_wl_pc_afp/81761e68739b381e2b1641700f43d2b5

    http://edition.cnn.com/2008/WORLD/asiapcf/11/26/mumbai.witness/index.html

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/south_asia/default.stm







    horrific terror attacks in Mumbai

    horrific terror attacks in Mumbai

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    Sunday, November 23, 2008

    Army lays siege to Kilinochchi; LTTE defences fast falling apart

    Army lays siege to Kilinochchi; LTTE defences fast falling apart



    Sri Lanka Army offensive divisions in the Wanni theatre of operations are now marching towards the Kilinochchi built up in three frontiers, defence sources in the battlefield said. Army Task Force 1 and 57 Division have launched attacks at the LTTE held earth bund built around Kilinochchi outskirts.

    According to the latest reports from the battlefront, pitched battles are going on in the North of Adampan, South of Adampan and Therumurikandi areas since early this morning (Nov 23).