'Full US support' to probing Mumbai attacks: Bush

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Washington, Nov 30: US President George W Bush has pledged his country's 'full support' to India in investigating terrorist attacks in Mumbai which left around 200 people dead, including five US citizens.

George Bush, however, said '' terrorists will not have the final word and that India will be able to withstand this ordeal. India, the world's largest democracy, can count on the United States, the world's oldest democracy, to stand behind it.'' He made this statement yesterday, his third since the attacks began on Wednesday, Nov 26 on his return from the Camp David presidential retreat where he and First Lady Laura Bush had spent the Thanksgiving holiday.

Before departure for the White House, he held a videoconference with Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, US Ambassador to India David Mulford, Consul General in Mumbai Paul Folmsbee and other national security officials to review the latest situation in Mumbai.

'' We are working to ensure that American citizens in India are safe. Throughout the process, we have kept President-elect Obama informed,'' Bush told waiting newsmen on the lawns of the White House.

'' We pledge the full support of the United States as India investigates these attacks, brings the guilty to justice and sustained its democratic way of life,'' he said.

Earlier in the week, the President called Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to send his support and condolences.

Bush said,'' the killers who struck this week are brutal and violent, but terror will not have the final word. People of India are resilient. People of India are strong. They have built a vibrant, multiethnic democracy that can withstand this trial.'' The President-elect Obama called Dr Singh on Friday to express his condolences on the tragedy and promised to keep a close watch on the developments in the commercial capital of India. He also discussed the situation with Secretary of State Rice.

UNI

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