Saturday 16 December 2017

Mumbai attacks 'handler' Abu Hamza 'arrested'

Barney Henderson

A KEY figure in the planning of the 26/11 Mumbai attacks, Abu Hamza, has been arrested by police in India, according to reports.

Hamza, who is also known as Syed Zabiuddin, is in police custody, officers in Delhi told reporters.

Indian authorities have described Hamza as the "handler" of the ten terrorists who stormed downtown Mumbai, carrying out attacks on a train station, bar and two five star hotels, leaving 166 people dead.

He was reportedly arrested on June 21 after arriving in India from the Middle East.

Hamza allegedly stayed in contact with the five two-man teams of terrorists by telephone as they carried out their attacks.

Nine of the terrorists were killed during the course of the three-day siege. One terrorist, Mohammed Ajmal Kasab, was captured alive and was sentenced to death last year. Hamza role in "handling" the terrorist teams emerged during Kasab's high profile trial.

India news agency Press Trust of India described Hamza as the 30-year-old "Hindi tutor" to the gunmen and said he came from the western state of Maharashtra, of which Mumbai is the capital.

The US in April offered a $10 million (£6.5 million) reward for information leading to the conviction of Hafiz Saeed, the founder of Lashkar-e-Taiba, who lives openly in Pakistan and is accused of masterminding the attacks.

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