Wednesday, September 07, 2011

A deadly terror bombing in New Delhi

TIME magazine reports that at least 10 people are confirmed dead after a bomb was set off at a court complex in one of India's major cities.
The militant group Harkat ul Jihad al Islami (HuJI) took responsibility for the blasts in an email sent to several Indian news organizations. The attack seemed to have been calculated to maximize the loss of life and to take advantage of gaps in the security screening process for this busy public building. "It had all the makings of an improvised explosive device set up by a terror group," said India's Home Secretary, R.K. Singh. Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, who is in Bangladesh on a state visit, called the blast a "cowardly" act. "We will never succumb to the pressure of terrorism," he said to reporters in Dhaka. "This is a long war in which all political parties, all the people of India, have to stand united so that this scourge of terrorism is crushed."
The Financial Times adds that the timing and location of the attacks was intentional.
The attack came amid fears across south Asia that strikes would be launched by terror groups to coincide with the 10th anniversary of the September 11 attacks on the US by the al-Qaeda terror network.
South Asia is considered by many security experts to be the most vulnerable region in the world to terror attack.
The target of the powerful explosion was at the heart of India’s administrative complex, a short distance from the India Gate memorial and government buildings. The bombing at the reception area of the court was timed to inflict maximum human casualties as hundreds of lawyers and litigants enter the court in the mid-morning.
The Christian Science Monitor notes the pressure is on the Indian government to get to the bottom of multiple recent attacks.
Over the past year alone, several high-profile attacks remain unresolved, including the Mumbai blasts in July, the Delhi High Court bomb in May, and a bombing in Varanasi. Go back a few years, and the list just in Delhi grows longer, including market blasts in 2005, mosque bombings at Jama Masjid in 2006 and 2010, and a 2008 explosion at a Mehrauli market.

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