Commonwealth games on LeT, Qaeda radar: US analyst

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Commonwealth Games 2010
New Delhi, Jul 2: With less than hindered days to go for the Commonwealth Games 2010 in Delhi, security concerns have resurfaced with a US think-tank affirming that the terror threat to the international sporting event still holds good.

When a national news agency questioned the Vice-President of Tactical Intelligence, Stratfor, Scott Stewart if the Commonwealth Games, scheduled to kick start in OCt 2010, was still on the terror radar, he said, "Yes".

"Yes. Two days after the Feb 13, 2010 blast in Pune, Ilyas Kashmiri (a wanted al-Qaeda terrorist) threatened the Field Hockey World Cup, the Indian Premier League cricket competition and the Commonwealth Games," Stewart is quoted as saying by the news agency.

Substantiating his statements, Mr Stewart recalled the warning issued by Kashmiri speaking of the continuation of the "attacks all across India until the Indian army leaves Kashmir".

The al Qaeda leader, who had said that the season three of Twenty20 cricket series Indian Premier League (IPL) and the Hockey World Cup were potential targets, had also warned the participating countries against sending their atheletes to India.

Cautioning that the country can not wait for a similar terror warning to be issued by the terrorists themselves to step up security and be prepared to thwart any strike, the analyst said, "If you are a militant group planning an attack, the last thing you want to do is to provide a distinct warning and place the security forces on high alert.

"There are, however, many different militant outfits (such as the LeT) that have an interest in hitting India and it is possible that one of them may be planning something," Stewart said.

"Again, we would not expect to hear a threat from a group that was planning an attack, especially the closer we edge to the event they want to attack. They would be very quiet. Publicised threat statements made by militants are not a reliable way to judge the true threat to an event," he added.

OneIndia News

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