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UPI Terrorism Watch

By
JOHN C.K. DALY, UPI International Correspondent

WASHINGTON, Feb. 1 (UPI) -- India's Research and Analysis Wing intelligence service used intercepts to determine that the Dhaka-based terrorist Naved Gul was directed by Pakistani agents before his involvement in the December attack on the Indian Institute of Science in Bangalore

RAW has established that in 2002 Gul was among 14 individuals from Hyderabad recruited to train with the militant Lashkar-e-Toiba group in Pakistan after unrest in Gujarat in 2002, which killed an estimated 1,000-2,000 people, mostly Muslims.

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Hyderabad is the capital of Andhra Pradesh state and the fifth-largest metropolis in India.

RAW has determined that Lashkar-e-Toiba recruits with passports went to Pakistan on Calcutta-Bangkok flights, while others went through Dhaka after crossing the Indian-Bangladeshi border.

RAW has been searching for Gul since 2003 for his alleged participation in planning terrorist attacks in Ahmedabad and Hyderabad.

Gul was linked to a terrorist cell of six people from Gujarat, Ahmedabad, Bharuch and Surat, who RAW believes were responsible for training recruits in Pakistan to carry out terrorist attacks across southern and central India, The Hindu reported. Their leader, Munir Ahmad, was killed while attempting to cross the Line of Control into Pakistan.

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RAW believes that Ahmad's networks recruited Gul.

Ahmad was imprisoned in India for several years for his role in assassinating Additional Superintendent of Police Krishna Prasad after communal violence struck Hyderabad in 1990. While Ahmad was sentenced to life imprisonment, in 2004 the Andhra Pradesh Government released him under an Independence Day amnesty.


Bulgarian Defense Minister Vesselin Bliznakov has told the media that Sofia is likely to sign a deal to establish two U.S. military bases in April.

According to Bliznakov, the likely sites for the two bases are Bezmer airfield and a training facility at Novo Selo.

The Pentagon's Global Air Traffic Operations-Mobility Command and Control Foreign Military Sales Office is currently supporting Bulgarian initiatives for establishing NATO interoperability and upgrading Bulgaria's Graf Ignatievo and Bezmer military airfields.

The U.S. Embassy in Sofia Web site notes, "The United States has a strong interest in seeing Bulgaria's defense capabilities further strengthened, and has provided over $100 million in support of military modernization goals over the past 15."

According to Bliznakov, U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice will be in Bulgaria in late April for a summit of NATO foreign ministers at which time the deal is expected to be finalized.

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Sofia News Agency reported that Bulgarian commanders will have overall command of the two facilities.

In a further display of solidarity with Washington, Bulgaria's Cabinet is expected to approve Thursday sending a 120-man troop contingent back to Iraq.

Bulgaria has lost 13 soldiers in Iraq. The new Bulgarian deployment will provide security for the Ashraf prison camp, 62 miles north of the capital Baghdad.

Ashraf currently houses 3,000-4,000 Iranian refugees, most of them members of the Mujahedeen-e-Khalq, the largest and most militant group battling the Islamic Republic of Iran's government.

The Mujahedeen-e-Khalq was added to the U.S. State Department's list of foreign terrorist groups in 1997 and to the European Union's terrorist list five years later.


Unable to quell terrorist attacks by the Lord's Resistance Army guerrillas from the neighboring Democratic Republic of Congo and Sudan, Uganda's government has appealed to the United Nations to increase its efforts to neutralize the group.

MISNA news agency reported that Ugandan Minister of Foreign Affairs Sam Kutesa made the appeal during a meeting with the Security Council.

The Lord's Resistance Army, or LRA, was founded in 1987. Under the leadership of Joseph Kony, the LRA paramilitary rebellion is now one of Africa's longest-running conflicts. Kony's ideology is a mix of Biblical millenarianism.

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The LRA has been accused by human rights groups of wide-scale human rights violations, including kidnapping and the forcible recruitment of child soldiers.

Human rights groups estimate that since 1987, nearly 20,000 children have been kidnapped by the LRA, primarily from the Acholi tribe. While violence was initially confined to Acholiland, since 2002 it has spread to other Ugandan districts.

An estimated 12,000 people have been killed and nearly two million civilians made refugees as a result of the conflict. In April 2004, the United Nations Security council condemned the LAR violence, and its International Criminal court is investigating the atrocities. The estimated cost of the conflict is at least $1.33 billion.

Analysts note that the presence of LRA guerrillas in northeastern Congo in Garamba Park, not far from Sudan, is an ominous new development. A week ago eight Guatemalan U.N. peacekeepers in the DRC were killed in the area by suspected LRA rebels.

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