MUMBAI, Nov. 27 (UPI) -- Terrorism experts say they disagree on whether the Mumbai terrorist attackers are linked to al-Qaida or other outside groups.
Some such as Christine Fair, senior political scientist and a South Asia expert at the RAND Corp., told The New York Times the Mumbai attacks did not fit the patterns usually employed by al-Qaida or Lashkar-e-Taiba, a Kashmir group used by Pakistani intelligence forces to target Indian interests in the disputed territory.
"There's absolutely nothing al-Qaida-like about it," she said of the Mumbai attacks that began Wednesday and continued into Thursday. "Did you see any suicide bombers? And there are no fingerprints of Lashkar. They don't do hostage-taking and they don't do grenades."
One unnamed Indian counterterrorism expert, however, disagreed, telling the newspaper the terrorists could be linked to Lashkar because the attacks seemed designed to torpedo relations between India and Pakistan. Or, the source said, they may be from an outlawed militant Islamic student group.
Sajjan Gohel, a security analyst in London, told the Times, "The fingerprints point to an Islamic al-Qaida-affiliated terrorist group" because attackers targeted "soft, symbolic targets and multiple coordinated attacks aimed to create maximum terror and human carnage and damage the economy."