Counter-Terrorism: India And The Sinister Saudi Connection

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September 14, 2012: Indian police recently (August 29-September 2) arrested 18 Islamic terrorists in the states of Karnataka, Maharashtra, and Andhra Pradesh. Those arrested were charged with belonging to Indian or Pakistan based Islamic terror organizations and planning to kill Indian politicians and journalists, as well as destroying some economic targets. Some of those arrested admitted that they had been assigned to scout Indian nuclear power plants and that some had met with foreign terrorists from Pakistan and Saudi Arabia.

Most of those arrested were Indian-born Moslems but these men knew of even more radical Indian Moslems who had moved to Saudi Arabia and quietly continued to support Islamic radicalism back in India. There are some two million Indian expatriates working in Saudi Arabia, which is the largest national contingent in the huge foreign work force there. Most of these Indians are Moslems and Moslem clerics constantly try to convert non-Moslem Indian workers.

Indian counter-terrorism investigators have found a lot of the money for terrorist operations in India is coming from Saudi Arabia or Pakistan via Saudi Arabia. India has complained to Saudi Arabia about this and the two countries have agreed to cooperate on suppressing Islamic terrorism among Indian Moslems in Saudi Arabia. Two years ago the two countries signed an extradition treaty and made it easier for intelligence agencies from both nations to cooperate.

But there are still problems, the biggest one being that Saudi Arabia is full of Islamic radicals who are not doing anything illegal (according to Saudi law) and can support Islamic radicals in other countries. The Saudis try to curb support for Islamic terrorists but for them it's often hard to tell the difference between Islamic radicals and Islamic terrorists. Another problem is that Indian Moslems in Saudi Arabia are difficult for Saudi police to keep tabs on because of language and cultural differences.

What the Saudi-Indian intelligence cooperation has revealed is that there are a lot more Indian Moslems in India and Saudi Arabia talking about carrying out terrorist acts that are actually doing it. The Saudis will just expel Indians found to be active in Islamic terrorist groups. When these guys arrive back in India they are arrested and questioned until it is certain they are guilty (in which case they are prosecuted) or innocent (and released). A growing number of young Indian Moslems are becoming radicalized and keeping tabs on all of them, even though most will never commit violence, is proving to be a huge task.

 


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