As news agencies have reported, another act of terrorism happened this morning in India. Four men drove to the building of the American center in Calcutta on motorbikes and opened fire on the police officers who were guarding the building. As a result of the attack, there have been reportedly five people killed and 17 injured. The criminals managed to disappear very quickly.
The Indian government suspects gunmen from Islamic radical organizations of the assault; however, it is not known which one of the groups is responsible. The object of the assault was chosen not incidentally. The office of the US Consulate, as well as other organizations, are situated in the building of the American center. The US Consul General in Calcutta, Christopher J. Sandrolini, said that the attendants of the consulate had not been injured. Maybe it was because of the fact that the act of terrorism was carried early in the morning, when the personnel of the US Consulate was not at work yet.
It should be mentioned that the assault took place on the threshold of the work of the joint Indian-American workgroup for the resistance to terrorism. In addition to that, Colin Powell expressed his support of India’s actions in the field of the anti-terrorist struggle when the US Secretary of State visited India.
Al-Qaeda gunmen are probably involved in this act of terrorism; maybe they decided to remind the world that they exist. Nevertheless, this new act of terrorism is not going to ease the tension of the Indian-Pakistani conflict. All the efforts taken by the Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf might be in vain. Perhaps this was what the terrorist wanted. Delhi will now be totally confident in running a tough policy in the relations with Pakistan.
Oleg Artyukov PRAVDA.Ru
Translated by Dmitry Sudakov
AP photo: Police put in a sandbag bunker around the American Center in Calcutta, India, Tuesday, Jan. 22, 2002