Terrorists Hit Mumbai

Terrorists have hit the popular tourist destination of Mumbai, with reports of multiple explosions and gunshots being heard across the city.

So far 80 people have been killed and 250 injured in seven attacks in the city.

Flames and a massive plume of smoke engulfed Mumbai’s five-star Taj Mahal hotel, following an encounter between police and gunmen holding foreign guests hostage.

Flames were suddenly seen pouring out of the upper floors of the historic old wing of the hotel, where gunmen had held around a dozen guests hostage as part of a series of assaults against targets around the city that began late Wednesday.

It was not immediately clear what triggered the fire, which became visible after television footage showed what appeared to be some of the hostages being shepherded out of the building. Some reports suggest that the terrorists have systematically targeted British and American passport holders and taken them hostage.

The Taj and another five-star hotel in the city, the Trident, had both been surrounded by heavily armed security personnel after they were attacked by separate groups of gunmen.
Teams of commandos were seen entering both hotels. The Taj, next to the British colonial era Gateway of India monument, is one of the world’s leading hotels and regularly attracts VIP visitors.

A group of Australians are curently hiding in a restaurant and have made telephone contact with Channel Nine this morning. They report that the city is in complete lockdown with explosions and gun fire still being heard. They have reported hostages have been taken at the Taj and Oberoi hotels. The gunmen are holed up inside and are locked in a gun battle with police.

A little-known group called the “Deccan Mujahedeen” has claimed responsibility.

reb.

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13 Responses

  1. Latest reports put injured at 900:

    Mumbai: In one of the most violent terror attacks on Indian soil, Mumbai came under an unprecedented night attack as terrorists used heavy machine guns, including AK-47s, and grenades to strike at the city’s most high-profile targets — the hyper-busy CST (formerly VT) rail terminus; the landmark Taj Hotel at the Gateway and the luxury Oberoi Trident at Nariman Point; the domestic airport at Santa Cruz; the Cama and GT hospitals near CST; the Metro Adlabs multiplex and Mazgaon Dockyard — killing at least 80 and sending more than 900 to hospital, according to latest reports.

    http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Terrorists_strike_Mumbai_80_dead_900_hurt/articleshow/3761410.cms

  2. This is really upsetting for me… we have colleagues in hotels in Mumbai at the moment and we have not heard from them yet. Hopefully in the coming hours we will get some news.

    On top of this, BKK airport is now closed.

  3. I know joni, me too.

    I can’t believe what is going on in Mumbai and at BKK. I’ve been through that airport heaps of times.

    Lincoln Archer has a live blog over at news.com.au which seems to be the place for the latest updates as well as sky news…

  4. The terrorists’ full threat against Mumbai is pubished here:

    http://www.deccanherald.com/CONTENT/Sep152008/scroll2008091590090.asp?section=frontpagenews

  5. reb

    Just a thought. These sort of attacks have been occuring in India and throughout the world for a long time, but we only seem to hear about them when it is westerners that are affected.

  6. Good point joni. I guess that’s what the terrorists must realise too…

  7. joni and reb, hope ppl u know in mumbai r safe….

  8. Lekhni,

    I was just saying to joni over the intertubes, that one of my colleague’s brother was staying at the Oberoi. He checked out at 9.40am and caught a cab. The terrorists stormed the place at 9.45am.

    I believe that the gunmen are still holding hostages…

  9. This indeed is a terrible incident but it’s interesting to note that the mainstream media in Australia has given it more attention than the 2002 riots in Gujarat where 1000s were murdered or countless other acts of pre-determined violence, oh wait.. I don’t think any Australians were in harm’s way.

    A life is a life, no matter what the race, creed, religion or colour.

  10. “A life is a life, no matter what the race, creed, religion or colour.”

    Good point maverick.

    Jus like we never heard much about what went on in Rhwanda, until the movie came out!!

  11. i think the terrorist hjave caught on to the fact that they get way more coverage if the ppl affected are of lighter skin tone.

    In the countless previous attacks in India, the attacks have been in predominantlu busy places such as market places etc where day to dy indians are affected.

    in any case, a despicable act by cowards – mis guided fools.

    interesting to note alo that their threat mentioned specific attention to the ats – anti-terror squad, maybe the tourist and high end spots were targeted to bring out a response from the big guns (Karkare – ats chied, salaskar – encounter specialist) instead of the standard terrorist response if the attack was on “normal” indians.

  12. latest update – haven’t seen it in our media here yet

    http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Mumbai_attacks_6_foreigners_among_101_dead/articleshow/3761410.cms

    it looks like what i said earlier – they are looking for international exposure as they have demanded the release of all terrorists held in indian prisons – by taking foreigners hostage, they are perhaps hoping for internayional pressure on india to release the terrorists. upto now, india’s policy has been no compromise or negotiation.

    seeing the futility of taking indian hostages, this time they r hoping us and uk will pressurise india to meet their demands to save their citizens.

  13. Four Australians now reported to be among the 100 dead so far…

    http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/story/0,25197,24719795-601,00.html

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