The terrorists in the Indian city of Mumbai, who killed more than 150 people and injured over 300, used the same tactics that Chechen field militants employed in the Northern Caucasus, says Russian counter terrorism presidential envoy Anatoly Safonov.
In towns of the Northern Cauasus in 1990s, terrorists seized homes and hospitals and took numerous hostages.
“These tactics were used during raids by militant Chechen field commanders Shamil Basayev and Salman Raduyev against the towns of Buddyonnovsk and Pervomaiskoye. For the first time in history the entire towns were terrorized, with homes and hospitals seized. The Mumbai terrorists have learned these tactics well,” Safonov told Russian news agency Interfax on Thursday.
Safonov says that the terror in Mumbai is proof that the anti-terror measures on a regional level are insufficient.
“The world is spending enormous resources to fight nonexistent threats and to support the military adventures of the leaders of certain countries. And it turns out that a big city may be unprotected against the raid of a handful of terrorists. This is another warning that in the global world terrorism truly remains the greatest challenge,” Safonov said to Interfax.
He also pointed out that now it’s the task of Indian special services to track down the terrorist group behind the attack on Mumbai. Safonov said they would need to determine whether it was “a subsidiary of some prominent terrorist organization”.
The presidential aide expressed hope that the Russian-Indian working group for combating terrorism will meet in the near future.
“We express our support and condolences to the people of India and sympathize with the families that lost relatives and dear ones in the terrorist attack in Mumbai,” Safonov said.
On Thursday terrorists attacked 10 targets in Mumbai, including several five star hotels, a cafe and a railway station.
Police say they have regained full control over the city.