26/11 planner Sajid Mir in Pakistan custody, years after claimed he died

Author: Yuvi June 25, 2022 Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT), 26/11 Mumbai attacks, 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks, Sajid Mir, Indian Express, India news, current affairs, Indian Express News Service, Express News Service, Express News, Indian Express India News

Sajid Mir, a senior Lashkar-e-Taiba operative and alleged mastermind of the 26/11 Mumbai attacks, who was once presumed dead, is in the custody of authorities in Pakistan. Sources familiar with the matter said Delhi was apprised of Mir’s arrest a few months back.

But in the absence of a formal public announcement of the arrest by Pakistan or details of his appearance in court, sources said, Indian officials are yet to independently confirm the arrest.

Nikkei Asia reported on Friday that Pakistan had arrested Mir to get out of the “grey list” of the Financial Action Task Force, an international counter-terrorism finance watchdog. Indian agencies have termed Mir as more dangerous than Lashkar chief Hafiz Saeed.

The news report quoted an unnamed FBI official as saying that Mir was arrested, tried and sentenced. However, it is not clear in which court he was tried, as there is no public record of such prosecution. Anti-terrorism courts in Pakistan have tried, convicted and sentenced other LeT members, including Saeed.

It also cited former Pakistan Finance Minister Hammad Azhar, who was in charge of talks with the FATF, that Pakistan had taken steps against Mir and other terrorists that were “satisfactory” to the international body.

The report quoted an unnamed Pakistani official as saying that Pakistanis “acknowledged” to both the US and India that Mir, who had previously been declared irreparable or dead by Pakistani authorities, had been found.

If Mir is in custody, one of India’s long-standing demands for Pakistan to be removed from India’s most wanted list. That list includes Major Abdur Rahman alias Pasha, Brigadier Riyaz, Abu Kahfa, Abu Al Qama and Abu Hamza who are still absconding.

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David Headley, the Pakistani-American LeT who lived in Mumbai to finalize the targets of the 26/11 attacks, and was arrested on drug charges by the FBI in Chicago in late 2008, met Mir and a Major Iqbal. name, which he described. as an ISI officer, during his testimony in a US court in 2011, and in a Mumbai court in 2016.

Mir is also on the FBI list of Most Wanted Terrorists, with a $5 million reward for providing information about him. The FBI described him as the “chief planner” of the Mumbai attacks. He was convicted by a US court in 2011 for his role in the Mumbai attacks along with Headley, his partner in the US and Tahawwur Rana and Major Iqbal among others. As of December 2021, US officials had assessed that Mir remained a free man in Pakistan.

Mir joined Lashkar-e-Taiba in the early 1990s and is said to have possessed the talented Headley, who was then an FBI/Drug Enforcement Authority informant, who recruited him into Lashkar in 2005, and the FIR And with the help of Pakistani army officers designated in the court. The documents had planned the Mumbai attacks as early as 2006.

Mir deployed Headley to Mumbai for reconnaissance targets in early 2006, took part in training 10 terrorists who arrived on the Mumbai coast from Thatha in Sindh, as well as giving them real-time phone instructions when an attack surfaced.

Investigators have determined that it was Meir’s voice who instructed one of the gunmen at Chabad House during the attack to kill a Jewish hostage after negotiations for a prisoner swap failed.

According to Headley’s testimony, three years before the Mumbai attack, Mir had once traveled to India to watch an India-Pakistan match via Wagah with a crowd of Pakistani cricket fans. Indian officials believe that this too was a reconnaissance trip.

Indian intelligence agencies believe that his organizational abilities make him “Pakistan’s most dangerous man”, “more dangerous than everyone else”.

In 2001, Mir, who was in the international wing of Lashkar-e-Taiba, began recruiting jihadists into Lashkar from several countries to fight the Americans in Afghanistan.

Mir first came to the attention of security officials in the US in 2002 when the FBI arrested 11 Islamist terrorists in Virginia with White House guns and maps. His name had surfaced indirectly during the investigation as then chief of Lashkar’s international operations.

In 2003, Mir conspired to bomb targets in Sydney via another foreign LeT recruit, Willy Birgit, an Afro-Caribbean from Guadeloupe, French overseas territory. The plot is foiled, and Birgit, who is prosecuted in France, reveals the role of Meir. French judge Jean-Louis Brugire, known as a “terrorist hunter”, determined from Birgit’s testimony and his own investigation that Mir was a senior Pakistani army officer, and was in the ISI. He also concluded a clear link between the Lashkar and the Pakistan Army and the ISI.

Some security experts believe that he is a civilian who may have received military training from the Pakistani Army. Some people believe that he was in the Pakistani army for a few years. Headley had said in his testimony that Mir’s father-in-law was a cleric in the Navy.

For the Indian authorities, as long as it was massive, another attack could not be ruled out. Headley had handed over pieces of material about various locations in the city, in addition to the 26/11 attacks, which he identified as potential targets.

Author: Yuvi

My name is Yuvi, I work as Sub Editor at newscinema.in

25 June, 2022, 3:36 am

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