New Group, Familiar Tactics in Mumbai Attacks

By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 26, 2008 8:01 PM CST
Police examine a damaged vehicle at the site of an explosion in Mumbai.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – The group claiming responsibility for today's violence in Mumbai is little known to terror experts, but the scope of the attacks suggests a well-organized and well-funded group. The coordinated attacks by the Deccan Mujahideen also fit into a newly emerging pattern of terrorists striking busy urban centers popular with tourists and wealthy Indians, writes Jeremy Page in the London Times. The intent seems to be to cause "maximum damage" to India's economy and reputation.

So what is the Deccan Mujahideen? The best guess right now is that it's a group of Islamist militants, possibly an offshoot of the Indian Mujahideen, which has staged bomb attacks on Indian cities this year. The Indian Mujahideen is "the first homegrown terrorist group to have emerged from India’s 151-million-strong Muslim population," notes Page. Its members complain of discrimination by the Hindu majority. An al-Qaeda connection also is possible, but security officials say the group is not active in India.