Commandos Free Hostages From Mumbai Hotels

By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Nov 27, 2008 8:31 AM CST
Indian Army personnel take positions outside the Taj Hotel in Mumbai, India, Thursday, Nov. 27, 2008.    (Rajanish Kakade)
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(Newser) – Black-clad Indian commandos moved painstakingly, room-by-room, through two massive five-star luxury hotels today in a bid to free dozens of people trapped by suspected Muslim militants who attacked at least 10 targets in India's financial capital of Mumbai, killing 104 people. Hostages and several bodies trickled out of the Taj Mahal hotel, and soldiers ushered several dozen captives out of the Oberoi hotel.

The Maharashtra state home ministry said 45 captives had been freed from the Oberoi and 35 were still trapped inside. The rescue efforts, which continued throughout the day, were punctuated by frequent gunshots and explosions and orange flames billowed from the Taj Mahal. One of the hostages freed from the Oberoi told reporters he had seen many bodies inside the hotel. But he refused to give more details, saying he had promised police not to discuss the rescue while it was ongoing.