US working to bring Mumbai attackers to justice: FBI chief (Lead)

March 3rd, 2009 - 10:06 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, March 3 (IANS) The US Tuesday said that it will work with India and the rest of the world to bring the perpetrators of the Mumbai atrocity to justice and condemned the attacks on Sri Lankan cricketers in Lahore saying terrorism is not a local, but a global issue.
Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) chief Robert Mueller Tuesday met Indian Home Minister P. Chidambaram to discuss security and counter terrorism measures with US assistance.

He also met National Security Advisor M.K. Narayanan and Intelligence Bureau chief Rajiv Mathur and discussed with them greater sharing of intelligence and information between the agencies of the two countries to prevent terror attacks in the future.

“Needless to say, the topic of our discussions was terrorism around the world, most particularly the Mumbai attack, in which 170 people were killed, including six Americans,” Mueller told reporters.

“We have seen unprecedented cooperation between our various agencies both during the Mumbai attacks and after the Mumbai attacks and we - each of us - are intent on assuring that those responsible are brought to justice,” he said.

The FBI chief joined India in condemning the Mumbai attacks and underlined that such an incident showed the need for greater cooperation to fight this global issue.

“Consequently, terrorism is not just a local issue. It is not an issue for one country. It is an issue across the world,” he said. “To be successful we all have to work together, share intelligence and utilize our various judicial systems to bring to justice those responsible for these attacks,” he added.

“We will continue to work with our counterparts here as well as our counterparts around the world to make sure that we not only that we bring these persons to justice, but also that we prevent further attacks,” the FBI chief stressed.

“Mueller’s visit was not unexpected as both the FBI and Indian intelligence agencies came close during the investigating process of last year’s Mumbai terror attacks,” said a home ministry official.

This association ultimately nudged Pakistan to accept that a part of the conspiracy was hatched on its soil, said officials.

During the 26/11 probe FBI officials had provided invaluable technical assistance and helped Indian investigators in analysing Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) and Global Positioning System of satellite phones used by the terrorists.

The government allowed FBI to join the probe with Indian investigating agencies, sift through evidences collected from various locations and question Ajmal Amir Kasab, the lone surviving attacker in the brazen terror attack in Mumbai.

Both External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee and Chidambaram condemned the shootout near Lahore’s Gaddafi Stadium and said the security of the players was “hopelessly inadequate”.

“It is shocking,” Chidambaram told reporters, reacting to the shootout in Lahore’s Liberty Market crossing, in which gunmen with sophisticated weapons, including rocket launchers, singled out the Sri Lankan team, injuring players like Thilanna Samaraweera and Upul Tharanga Paranawitharana.

“It is quite obvious that security of the Sri Lankan players has been hopelessly inadequate,” Chidambaram said.

“I request the Pakistani authorities not to divert the attention of the international community, but to take courage in both hands and dismantle the terrorism infrastructure and take strict measures against the perpetrators,” said Mukherjee.

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