About ANALYSTS' VIEW - Mumbai gunmen attacks kill 86
|November 27th, 2008||#1|
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ANALYSTS' VIEW - Mumbai gunmen attacks kill 86 info
Thu Nov 27, 2008 7:42am IST
SINGAPORE (Reuters) - At least 86 people were killed in attacks by gunmen in India's commercial hub Mumbai and security forces began moving on two luxury hotels on Thursday where foreign hostages were being held, officials and witnesses said.
The attacks by small groups of gunmen armed with automatic weapons and grenades on the hotels and other sites in the city came amid state elections and risk destabilising the country ahead of national elections next year.
Following are analysts' reactions to the attacks:
ENRICO TANUWIDJAJA, CURRENCY STRATEGIST AT OCBC BANK IN SINGAPORE:
"People are still waiting for a likely motivation of targeting foreigners, but at this time of the market slowdown, such bad news as this would not do any good for the Indian economy.
"This might give reason for foreign funds to hold inflow for the time being, but the immediate concern will be on the domestic and tourism spending nearing the year-end.
"The Reserve Bank of India is likely to guard the dollar/rupee on possible spikes."
ROBERT BROADFOOT, MANAGING DIRECTOR OF THE POLITICAL AND ECONOMIC RISK CONSULTANCY (PERC) IN HONG KONG.
"This attack seems to me to have the hallmarks of one of the younger indigenous groups, the Indian Mujahedeen or one of their offshoots.
"This was a well-planned, carefully co-ordinated, almost army-style operation. It's very different from a set of indiscriminate suicide bombings. The style of this attack is very different, particularly the specific targeting of foreigners."
"India is not going to hell in a handbasket. The economy has a lot of depth. I certainly don't think that this attack is going to cripple or wreck the economy."
JOSEPH TAN, ASIA CHIEF ECONOMIST AT CREDIT SUISSE IN SINGAPORE:
"Clearly, it will be negative for the sentiment towards India at this point of time, the time when the world is already looking to be highly uncertain in term of its growth prospects.
"When the equity market actually opens, it could probably be opening down as opposed to the rest of Asia.
"Secondly, such terrorist attacks do not have a lasting impact on the market -- I don't think it will have a lasting impact on India.
"This will be negative for the rupee versus the dollar, but again I want to stress that the impact will be short-lived."
|November 27th, 2008||#2|
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Some 100 killed as gunmen rampage in India city info
Some 100 killed as gunmen rampage in India city
By RAMOLA TALWAR BADAM, Associated Press Writer Ramola Talwar Badam, Associated Press Writer – 11 mins ago
MUMBAI, India – Teams of gunmen stormed luxury hotels, a popular restaurant, hospitals and a crowded train station in coordinated attacks across India's financial capital, killing at least 101 people, taking Westerners hostage and leaving parts of the city under siege Thursday, police said. A group of suspected Muslim militants claimed responsibility.
Police and gunmen were exchanging occasional gunfire at two luxury hotels and an unknown number of people were held hostage, said A.N. Roy, a top police official. Pradeep Indulkar, a senior official at the Maharashtra state Home Ministry said 101 people were killed and 287 injured.
Officials said at least 6 militants had also been killed since the overnight attacks began around 9:30 p.m.
Mid-morning Thursday, police loudspeakers declared a curfew around Mumbai's landmark Taj Mahal hotel, and black-clad commandos ran into the building as fresh gunshots rang out from the area, apparently the beginning of an assault on gunmen who had taken hostages in the hotel.
Ambulances were seen driving up to the entrance to the hotel and journalists were made to move even further back from the area.
A series of explosions had rocked the Taj Mahal just after midnight. Screams were heard and black smoke billowed from the century-old edifice on Mumbai's waterfront. Firefighters sprayed water at the blaze and plucked people from balconies with extension ladders. By dawn, the fire was still burning.
The attackers specifically targeted Britons and Americans at the hotels and restaurant, witnesses said. Officials said at least 120 people were wounded.
Alex Chamberlain, a British citizen who was dining at the upscale Oberoi hotel, told Sky News television that a gunman ushered 30 to 40 people from the restaurant into a stairway and, speaking in Hindi or Urdu, ordered everyone to put up their hands.
"They were talking about British and Americans specifically. There was an Italian guy, who, you know, they said: 'Where are you from?" and he said he's from Italy and they said 'fine' and they left him alone. And I thought: 'Fine, they're going to shoot me if they ask me anything — and thank God they didn't," he said.
Chamberlain said he managed to slip away as the patrons were forced to walk up stairs, but he thought much of the group was being held hostage.
The motive for the onslaught was not immediately clear, but Mumbai has frequently been targeted in terrorist attacks blamed on Islamic extremists, including a series of bombings in July 2006 that killed 187 people.
Early Thursday, state home secretary Bipin Shrimali said four suspects had been killed in two incidents when they tried to flee in cars, and Roy said two more gunmen were killed at the Taj Mahal. State Home Minister R.R. Patil said nine more were arrested. They declined to provide any further details.
"We're gong to catch them dead or alive," Patil told reporters. "An attack on Mumbai is an attack on the rest of the country."
An Indian media report said a previously unknown group calling itself the Deccan Mujahideen had claimed responsibility for the attacks in e-mails to several media outlets. There was no way to verify that claim.
The NDTV news channel showed several yellow and black rubber dinghies on a beach near the hotels, apparently used by the gunmen to reach the area.
Police reported hostages being held at the Taj Mahal and Oberoi hotels, two of the best-known upscale destinations in this crowded but wealthy city.
Gunmen who burst into the Taj "were targeting foreigners. They kept shouting: `Who has U.S. or U.K. passports?'" said Ashok Patel, a British citizen who fled from the hotel.
Authorities believed seven to 15 foreigners were hostages at the Taj Mahal hotel, said Anees Ahmed, a top state official. It was also unclear where the hostages were in the Taj Mahal, which is divided into an older wing, which was in flames, and a modern tower that was not on fire.
State Department spokesman Robert Wood said U.S. officials were not aware of any American casualties, but were still checking. He said he could not address reports that Westerners might be among the hostages.
"We condemn these attacks and the loss of innocent life," White House spokesman Tony Fratto said.
Officials at Bombay Hospital, speaking on condition of anonymity, said a Japanese man had died there and nine Europeans had been admitted, three of them in critical condition with gunshots. All had come from the Taj Mahal, the officials said.
At least three top Indian police officers — including the chief of the anti-terror squad — were among those killed, said Roy.
Blood smeared the floor of the Chhatrapati Shivaji rail station, where attackers sprayed bullets into the crowded terminal.
Nasim Inam's hands shook when he spoke of seeing four attackers gunning down commuters as they walked to catch late trains home.
"They wore black T-shirts and blue jeans. They were carrying big guns," said Inam. "They just fired randomly at people and then ran away. In seconds, people fell to the ground."
Other gunmen attacked Leopold's restaurant, a landmark popular with foreigners, and the police headquarters in southern Mumbai, the area where most of the attacks took place. The restaurant was riddled with bullet holes and there were blood on the floor and shoes left by fleeing customers. Gunmen also attacked Cama and Albless Hospital and G.T. Hospital, though it was not immediately clear if anyone was killed.
Early Thursday, several European lawmakers were among people who barricaded themselves inside the Taj, a century-old seaside hotel complex and one of the city's best-known destinations.
"I was in the main lobby and there was all of a sudden a lot of firing outside," said Sajjad Karim, part of a delegation of European lawmakers visiting Mumbai ahead of a European Union-India summit.
As he turned to get away, "all of a sudden another gunmen appeared in front of us, carrying machine gun-type weapons. And he just started firing at us ... I just turned and ran in the opposite direction," he told The Associated Press over his mobile phone.
Hours later, Karim remained holed up in a hotel restaurant, unsure if it was safe to come out.
The state government ordered schools and colleges closed Thursday.
India has been wracked by bomb attacks the past three years, which police blame on Muslim militants intent on destabilizing this largely Hindu country. Nearly 700 people have died.
Since May a militant group calling itself the Indian Mujahideen has taken credit for a string of blasts that killed more than 130 people. The most recent was in September, when a series of explosions struck a park and crowded shopping areas in the capital, New Delhi, killing 21 people and wounding about 100.
Relations between Hindus, who make up more than 80 percent of India's 1 billion population, and Muslims, who make up about 14 percent, have sporadically erupted into bouts of sectarian violence since British-ruled India was split into independent India and Pakistan in 1947.
Associated Press writers Erika Kinetz in Mumbai and Raphael G. Satter in London contributed to this report.
|November 28th, 2008||#4|
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Live updates on here
Indian forces are clearing the last gunmen from two luxury hotels in Mumbai and a Jewish centre more than 30 hours after a series of devastating attacks in the city killed about 120 people.
Keep up with events as they unfold here. All times are in GMT.
I'm all in favour of keeping dangerous weapons out of the hands of fools. Let's start with typewriters. Frank Lloyd Wright
|November 29th, 2008||#7|
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No impact to the economy? Is this guy on drugs? The attacks on Bali hurt the Indonesians enough. Every terror attack has had an effect.
Anyways... I guess we can just say screw it, convert to Islam and adopt Sharia law. I'm sure that's the shortest cut to stopping them from blowing things up all the time.
|November 29th, 2008||#8|
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"My center is giving way, my right is in retreat situation excellent. I shall attack." -Foch
I am from NYC. I fly a French flag because I work in Paris.
|November 30th, 2008||#10|
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