Pakistan spies 'in on attacks'

2010-10-19 14:06
New Delhi - Pakistan's intelligence agency was deeply involved in planning the 2008 terror attack on Mumbai, going so far as to fund reconnaissance missions to the Indian city, according to a report on the interrogation of a US citizen convicted in the attack.

The attack, blamed on the Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Taiba group, killed 166 people, paralysed India's business capital and froze peace efforts between Pakistan and India.

David Headley, who pleaded guilty in US federal court to laying the groundwork for the attack, told Indian interrogators in June that officers from Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence agency were deeply intertwined with Lashkar-e-Taiba.

The spy agency provided handlers for all the top members of the group, gave them direction and provided their funding, Headley said, according to the government report on his June interrogation.

Baseless allegations

The report, marked secret, was obtained by The Associated Press late Monday.

"According to Headley, every big action of LeT is done in close co-ordination with ISI," the report said, using a common abbreviation for Lashkar-e-Taiba.

India has long accused the Pakistan spy service of being involved with, and in some cases directing, terror groups. US officials have also accused the agency of working with the Taliban to co-ordinate attacks on Nato forces in Afghanistan.

A senior intelligence official in Pakistan, speaking on condition of anonymity because he was not authorised to speak to the media on the record, said the allegations were baseless.

According to the Indian report, Headley met repeatedly with his intelligence agency handler, whom he identified as Major Iqbal, throughout the preparations for the Mumbai attacks.

Iqbal gave him $25 000 to fund his scouting trips to India and a camera-phone, according to the report.

Interpol members alerted for suspect

Headley also received training in the basics of spy work from an instructor assigned to him by Iqbal, the report said.

In return, Headley gave Iqbal copies of the photos and videos he took of potential targets during his trips to India, the report said. Iqbal also made suggestions about how best to carry out the attack on Mumbai, the report said.

Earlier this month, Interpol - acting on India's request - notified its members to be on the alert for Iqbal.

The report came as Mohammed Ajmal Kasab, the only surviving gunman from the attacks, was appealing his death sentence in the Mumbai High Court.

Kasab was one of 10 Pakistanis who attacked two luxury hotels, a Jewish centre and a busy train station during the 60-hour siege.

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
Read more on:    india  |  pakistan  |  security  |  mumbai attacks  |  espionage publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Rugby World Cup 2015

All the action from the 2015 RWC, including live coverage of all 48 matches, breaking news, fixtures, results, logs - and much more!


Rugby World Cup 2015

Heyneke unveils his USA plan
Lancaster, Robshaw consider their futures
Foley destroys England's dream
Boks continue upward curve
Traffic Alerts

Spontaneity is the order of the day. Let go and have some fun. Try not to set too many set plans and expectations and enjoy more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.