Australia/Israel & Jewish Affairs Council

Mumbai Terror Attack kills at least 21 people

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Three bombs rocked crowded districts of Mumbai during rush hour on Wednesday, killing at least 21 people and injuring at least 141 people in the biggest attack on India since the November 2008 terrorist attacks also in Mumbai which were perpetrated by the militant Pakistani group Lashkar-e-Taibe.

Aagam Doshi, a witness to the attack told Reuters:

"We came outside, and the area was filled with black smoke. There were bodies lying all over the street, there was lots of blood... We saw many bodies missing arms and missing legs".

Officials said:

"At least one car and a motorbike were used in the coordinated attacks in which improvised explosive devices were believed to have been used."

Indian Home Minister Palaniappan Chidambaram told reporters:
"The blasts occurred at about 6.45pm within minutes of each other. Therefore, we infer that this was a coordinated attack by terrorists".

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the blasts. However, it is suspected that terrorists with links in Pakistan are responsible for the attacks.

The violent rampage by Lashkar-e-Taiba was carried out in Mumbai near the same area in November 2008, when they coordinated shooting and bombing attacks across Mumbai, in which 166 people were killed and at least 308 injured. During the rampage the Mumbai Jewish centre, ‘Nairman House' was seized and six people inside were tortured and killed including Rabbi Gavriel Holtzberg and his wife Rivka Holtzberg. The Rabbi and his pregnant wife were sexually assaulted and their genitals were mutilated before they were killed. Ajmal Kasab, the only attacker who was captured alive, disclosed that the attackers were members of Lashkar-e-Taiba.

While there was no immediate indication that Lashkar-e-Taiba is involved, any suggestion attributing blame to Pakistan could complicate its difficult relationship with India and further undermine Pakistani ties with the US.