Standing shoulder to shoulder with India in the fight against terrorism, the United States of America has offered $5 million for information on 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks. India and the rest of the world today mark the 10th anniversary of the horrendous Mumbai attack. Extending its solidarity with India in bringing the mastermind behind bars, USA today announced a $5 million (approximately Rs. 35 crore) reward.
The Department of State Rewards for Justice (RFJ) Program is offering a new reward for up to $5 million for information leading to the arrest or conviction of any individual who was involved in planning or facilitating 2008 Mumbai attack: US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo pic.twitter.com/5oN43VAJEz
— ANI (@ANI) November 26, 2018
The reward will be given for ‘any information leading to the arrest or conviction of any individual in any country who committed, conspired, aided or abetted the 2008 Mumbai attacks’.
United States Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in his statement said, “The Department of State Rewards for Justice (RFJ) Program is offering a new reward for up to $5 million for information leading to the arrest or conviction of any individual who was involved in planning or facilitating 2008 Mumbai attack.”
The support comes from United States a decade after the terror attack took place in India’s financial capital, in which 166 people including six Americans were killed. 10 Pakistan based LeT i.e. Lashkar-e-Taiba terrorist were involved in the terror attack as they went on a shooting rampage attacking multiple targets from 26th-29th November 2008. 9 terrorists were brought down by the police and one named Ajmal Amir Kasab was held by the police. Kasab was later hanged after a long trial that went in the Supreme Court.
This decision by United States has sent clear signals across the globe that USA is showcasing its strong ties with India. Furthermore, the decision has come in less than a fortnight after Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s meeting with US Vice-President Mike Pence. It is said that Pence raised this issue and showed his concern that even after a decade the master minds behind the terror attacks haven’t been brought to justice and are roaming freely in Pakistan.
In its statement today the United States State Department said, “The United States is committed to working with our international partners to identify and bring to justice those responsible for the 2008 Mumbai attack.”
In April 2012, the US State Department had announced rewards for the information on LeT founder Hafiz Mohammad Saeed who is considered to be the prime conspirator of 26/11 terror attacks and Hafiz Abdul Rahman Makki, another LeT leader. In December 2001, the US Department of State identified LeT as a Foreign Terrorist Organization. In May 2005, the United Nations (UN) 1267 Sanctions Committee added LeT to the Consolidated UN Security Council Sanctions List.
Prior to this, Pakistan’s former envoy to the USA, Husain Haqqani, said, “With US-Pakistan relations in a tailspin and hawkish attitudes dominating the subcontinent, one cannot predict if and how the situation would be controlled in the event of another major terrorist attack in India, with clear linkages to groups in Pakistan.”
American President Donald Trump also recently issued a statement saying, “Pakistan doesn’t do a damn thing for the USA.” Sending Pakistan in a state of shock the Trump administration scrapped USD 1.66 billion security assistance to Pakistan. “The USA has suspended USD 1.66 billion in security assistance to Pakistan after President Donald Trump’s directive”, said the Pentagon. Earlier, President Trump alleged that the Pakistani government had helped Al-Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden and provided him a hideout at Abbottabad.
Earlier in the month of August, the States military had cancelled $300 million aid to Pakistan for what it termed as the country’s failure to take decisive and strict action against militant groups.