Sunday, November 7, 2010

Terrorism high on agenda during Obama visit

Barack Obama’s visit is being seen by security experts as crucial from the terrorism point of view. India has been voicing its concerns about the growing menace of terrorism from Pakistan and would want the President of the United States to make a strong statement and also promise more action on terror groups being harboured by our neighbours.

Security experts told that the US has come to accept that the biggest threat to the world is no longer from the Al-Qaeda but from the Lashkar-e-Tayiba which carried out the 26/11 attack. We could expect a joint statement from both the leaders on the Lashkar at New Delhi tomorrow, sources told

During the meetings of security experts from both nations in the run up to the Obama visit, the biggest point of discussion has been regarding the Lashkar and its growing global threat. The Indian agencies while briefing US experts have managed to convince them that the Lashkar is not just a threat to India, but has become a world force. India says that with Pakistan refusing to cooperate India would need the assistance of the US in dismantling terror camps across the border in order to curb the Lashkar menace.

Sources say that the US is in agreement about this growing threat and is also aware that the Al-Qaeda has started to take a back seat and the Lashkar is in the fore front today.

Sources say that the Lashkar has been increasing its reach and has US as one of its primary targets. The revelations by American national and 26/11 accused, David Headley is also testament to the fact that the Lashkar in fact has a global reach. Indian agencies say that it was very important for the US to understand this problem and react to the same, not just with words but with action as well.

Indian agencies have been telling their counterparts that the Lashkar has access to sophisticated weaponry and there is a need for the US to exercise its might to cut off such support at the source.

Indian intelligence agencies say that it is a known fact the ISI has been grooming the Lashkar for global operations and has clearly directed the outfit to increase its reach. In addition to this, the Lashkar has also been advised to use the growing networks of Dawood Ibrahim across the drug corridors of the world which includes the US. The IB says that the primary focus of the Al-Qaeda has been restricted to couantries such as Afghanistan and Iraq while the Lashkar will carry out terror strikes in other countries under different names as was done at the Times Square.

India security experts say that it is important for the US to realize these problems at the earliest and act against such terror groups across the border. Indian agencies feel that half the problem will be solved if terror modules are dismantcled in Pakistan.

In addition to this India would push the US to pressurize Pakistan to act against the perpetrators of the 26/11 attack who are still safe in Pakistan. According to Indian agencies, this is of prime importance since unless all the accused in 26/11 attack are brought to justice there will be no meaning for the war on terrorism.

Sources in the Home Ministry say that there will be discussions specific to this point since the biggest problem that India faces today is that of terrorism emanating from the border. The source also says that this meeting on this aspect will be fruitful since the US looked serious when it slapped sactions on the Lashkar ahead of the Obama visit.

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