Lashkar-e-Taiba (Urdu: Ù„Ø´ÙƒØ±Ù Ø·ÙŠØ¨Ù‡ laÅ¡kar-Ä• á¹¯aiyyiba, literally Army of the Pure or Righteous, also transliterated as Lashkar-i-Tayyaba, Lashkar-e-Tayyaba, Lashkar-e-Tayyiba or Lashkar-i-Taiba) is one of the largest and most active Islamic terrorist organizations in South Asia. The group was founded by Hafiz Muhammad Saeed in Afghanistanâ€™s Kunar province in the late 1980s becoming especially active after 1993 and has close ties to Al-Qaeda. The aim of the group is the end of Indian rule in Kashmir and establishment of an Islamic caliphate in Central Asia.
Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) is believed to be based near Lahore and is said to operate several militant training camps in Pakistani-administered Kashmir and is believed to receive support from Pakistanâ€™s Inter Services Intelligence agency (ISI). The group also receives support from South Asians Muslims living in the Persian Gulf region and through â€œIslamic charities.â€ Lashkar e-Taiba purports to train its hundreds of thousands of young members for an Islamic Jihad in the troubled region of Kashmir & Jammu.
From the South Asia Terrorism Portal (SATP):
LeT has an extensive network that run across Pakistan and India with branches in Saudi Arabia, United Kingdom, Bangladesh and South East Asia.
The outfit collects donations from the Pakistani community in the Persian Gulf and United Kingdom, Islamic Non-Governmental Organisations, and Pakistani and Kashmiri businessmen. It receives considerable financial, material and other forms of assistance from the Pakistan government, routed primarily through the ISI. The ISI is the main source of LeT’s funding. Saudi Arabia also provides funds.
The LeT maintains ties to various religious/military groups around the world, ranging from the Philippines to the Middle East and Chechnya primarily through the al Qaeda fraternal network.
The LeT has also been part of the Bosnian campaign against the Serbs.
It has allegedly set up sleeper cells in the U.S. and Australia, trained terrorists from other countries and has entered new theatres of Jihad like Iraq.
The group has links with many international Islamist terrorist groups like the Ikhwan-ul-Musalmeen of Egypt and other Arab groups.
LeT has a unit in Germany and also receives help from the Al Muhajiraun, supporter of Sharia Group, (Abu Hamza Masari- of Mosque Finsbury Park, North London) and its annual convention is regularly attended by fraternal bodies in Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Yemen, Bahrain, Oman, Kosovo, Bangladesh, Myanmar, USA, Palestine, Bosnia, Philippines, Jordan, Chechnya, etc.
It also has links with the International Sikh Youth Federation (Lakhbir Singh Rode).
From the New York Times:
American intelligence and counterterrorism officials said Friday that there was mounting evidence that a Pakistani militant group based in Kashmir, most likely Lashkar-e-Taiba, was responsible for this weekâ€™s deadly attacks in Mumbai.
The officials cautioned that they had reached no firm conclusions about who was responsible for the attacks, or how they were planned and carried out. Nevertheless, they said that evidence gathered in the past two days pointed to a role for Lashkar-e-Taiba or possibly another group based in Kashmir, Jaish-e-Muhammad, which also has a track record of attacks against India.
Ajmal, the single terrorist arrested alive by Indian security, claims that all of the jihadists were Pakistani citizens. However, this does not fit other accounts that the group were entirely of Indian origin. Ajmal also claimed that the “gang hoped to get away”. From the Times of India:
Ajmal made another important disclosure: that all terrorists were trained in marine warfare along with the special course Daura-e-Shifa conducted by the Lashkar-e-Taiba in what at once transforms the nature of the planning from a routine terror strike and into a specialized raid by commandos.
Battle-hardened ATS officials are surprised by the details of the training the terrorists were put through before being despatched for the macabre mission. This was very different from a terrorist attack, and amounted to an offensive from the seam, said a source.
Ajmal has revealed the name of his fellow jihadis all Pakistani citizens as Abu Ali, Fahad, Omar, Shoaib, Umer, Abu Akasha, Ismail, Abdul Rahman (Bara) and Abdul Rahman (Chhota).
From there, they mandated to kill indiscriminately, particularly white foreign tourists, and spare Muslims split up into five batches. Two of them Ismail and Ajmal took a taxi to Victoria Terminus. Three other batches of two each headed for Oberoi Hotel, Cafe Leopold and Nariman House. The remaining four went to Taj Hotel. [...]
Kasab told the police that he and 9 others got off a vessel about 10 nautical miles from Mumbai and shifted to two boats hijacked from fishermen.
One source in ATS familiar with the details of the interrogation quoted him saying that in all 16 fidayeens came to Mumbai on Wednesday. A native of Faridkot in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK), 21-year-old Kasab told police they had done a reccee of Mumbai few months ago. He said he had come along with eight of the operatives to Mumbai as students and lived in a rented room at Colaba market, a stone’s throw away from Nariman House.
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