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Pak Army's re-focus on Indian border instead of FATA was terrorists' aim behind 26/11?

December 2, 2010 - Islamabad

The 2008 Mumbai attacks may have been a success for terrorists, if their plan was to ensure that the Pakistan Army would not shift its troops from the Indian border to the tribal areas neighbouring Afghanistan, according to a leaked US embassy cable posted by WikiLeaks.

"If the militants' plan was to force the Pakistani Army to re-focus on its eastern border and eliminate any chance (however slight) of moving forces from the Indian border to the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA), then their plan may have succeeded," said the cable, classified by US Deputy Chief of Mission Gerald M. Feierstein.

"The Mumbai attacks likely torpedoed any prospect of Indian CBMs on Kashmir in the immediate future. The decision to send ISI MG Pasha to India, however, is a good sign that both sides are trying to prevent these horrific attacks from undermine all the progress made on bilateral rapprochement," it added.

The cable, which was classified as "secret", talked of terror group Lashkar-e-Taiba's involvement in the Mumbai attacks.

"The British High Commission officials in Islamabad told Polcouns November 28 that HMG has evidence the attacks in Mumbai were carried out by Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT), which was planning more attacks. The UK High Commission is suggesting to London that they press the GOP for quick, credible action in the form of arrests of LeT leaders to prevent a feared Indian backlash."

"The UK believes that New Delhi will be pressed politically to respond, at a minimum with increased proxy action in Balochistan, and at a maximum with attacks on LeT training camps in Kashmir," said the cable's summary.

The report included a "comment" on the British High Commission: "For now, we believe the UK Embassy here is overreacting but agree it would be helpful if the GOP could get out ahead of the New Delhi reaction and take proactive measures against LeT leaders."


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