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FBI hands over evidence to Pakistan: report

Source: PTI
January 04, 2009 17:55 IST
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The Federal Bureau of Investigations has given to Islamabad evidence amassed by it on the involvement of Pakistan-based elements in the Mumbai strikes, including the messages from Lashkar-e-Tayiba handlers to the terrorists about the arrival of Indian commandos while watching the incident live on TV, a media report said on Sunday.

Stating that evidence is growing to prove that the Mumbai strikes were orchestrated by militants based in Pakistan, The Sunday Times reported that Zarar Shah, a communications specialist of the Lashkar-e-Tayiba, has admitted under interrogation in Pakistan that he advised the terrorists by phone as the attacks unfolded.

Controllers in Pakistan watched live television and warned the gunmen of the arrival of Indian commandos, the report said, citing evidence amassed by the FBI and handed over to the Pakistani government.

The FBI had decoded calls over the Internet that were made between the gunmen in two five-star hotels and a Jewish centre in Mumbai with their LeT controllers in Pakistan, identified as Shah, Abu Hamza and Abu Qafa, it said.

Talking in colloquial Punjabi, the controllers repeatedly told the attackers 'aag lagao', which has been interpreted in India as a way of maximising casualties, the paper said.

During the conversation, the men were also instructed to kill all the Israelis held captive in the Jewish hostel, but to spare all the Muslims, it said.

Shah revealed that the 10 assailants were trained in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir and then travelled by boat from Karachi to Mumbai. He implicated several other Lashkar men.

According to the report, Islamabad rejected the alleged FBI evidence and dismissed India's contention about close ties between LeT and the ISI.

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