Mumbai mastermind reported captured in Pakistani raid

December 8, 2008

Pakistan (ChattahBox) — The suspected planner of last month’s Mumbai terror attacks has been arrested in a raid on a militant group in Pakistan. According to new reports Pakistan security forces overran a militant camp on the outskirts of Pakistani Kashmir’s main city and seized the alleged mastermind of the Mumbai attacks.

Troops backed by a helicopter, grabbed Zaki-ur-Rehman Lakhvi among at least 12 people taken Sunday in the raid on the riverbank camp run by the banned group Laskhar-e-Taiba in Pakistani Kashmir. There was reportedly a brief gunfight in the camp near Muzaffarabad before the militants were subdued.

The capture of Lakhvi was likely to please India as well as U.S. officials, who allege he also directed Laskhar-e-Taiba operations in Chechnya, Bosnia and Southeast Asia, training members to carry out suicide bombings and attack populated areas. In 2004, he allegedly sent operatives and funds to attack U.S. forces in Iraq.

Indian officials say the sole Mumbai attacker captured alive has told them that Lakhvi recruited him for the mission and that Lakhvi and another militant, Yusuf Muzammil, planned the operation, which left 171 people dead in India’s commercial capital.

However it’s not immediately clear what Pakistan intends to do with Lakhvi.Pakistan and India do not have an extradition treaty. Last week, President Asif Ali Zardari indicated anyone arrested in Pakistan in connection with the attacks would be tried in Pakistan.

The arrest inside dangerously unstable Pakistan comes less than two weeks after the deadly November 26 attacks.  Compare that with 9/11. Where after seven-plus years and counting and still no Osama bin Laden, who also was believed in hiding in either Afghanistan or Pakistan or both.


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