Clinton stayed at Taj to send tough message to terrorists

July 21st, 2009 - 7:54 pm ICT by IANS  

By Arun Kumar
Washington, July 21 (IANS) Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has said she chose to stay at the Taj Mahal Hotel in Mumbai last weekend to make it very clear that India and the US “are going to work together to stamp out the scourge of terrorism”.

“I wanted to start in Mumbai and I wanted to stay here, and I wanted to show our sympathy and solidarity for the people who lost their lives and were injured in the terrorist attack and for those who courageously prevented more deaths and injury,” Clinton said in an interview with Fox News recorded in Mumbai.

Her stay at the Taj Mahal Hotel was also intended to “to make it very clear that, you know, we’re going to work together to stamp out the scourge of terrorism,” she said.

Clinton agreed with the interviewer that it was “hugely significant” that she had chosen to stay at one of the two hotels attacked by terrorists Nov 26. “It is,” she said.

“We’re in the Taj Hotel, which was one of the two hotels that were attacked by the terrorist on November the 26th, what they call 26/11 here in India. And I wanted to stay here. I was very anxious to come to India.

“We waited until after their elections were over, which we thought appropriate. And then as soon as I could, I scheduled a trip to come and talk to the leaders about all the issues that we are going to work on together,” she said.

“You’re right. I think part of staying here, part of the message that I want to send is that, just like we did after 9/11, we are not giving in. We are not in any way intimidated by the terrorists,” Clinton said when asked if she had wanted to make her event at the Taj more public.

“They can wreak havoc and death, but they are no match for people’s feelings of positive energy, their commitment to life, their willingness to keep going,” she said.

“So I see it as a rebuke to those who plan and plot and carry out these horrible attacks. And I feel very strongly that we have to stand up against that.”

Clinton wrapped up her four-day India visit Monday.

(Arun Kumar can be contacted at

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