Report: 'India Was Ready to Strike Pakistan'

The Pakistani High Commissioner in London, Wajid Shamsul Hassan, says India was ready to launch a military strike on Pakistan in retaliation for the Mumbai terror attacks, Sky News reported.

Hassan said British and American officials had to intervene to prevent India from carrying out an attack.

"On the day of the Mumbai attacks, I got some information in London that India was going to act very drastically against Pakistan in retaliation to what happened," Hassan told Sky News.

The senior diplomat alerted the Pakistani government and President Asif Ali Zardari to the threat.

In turn, Zardari urgently contacted high level British and American officials who intervened to calm the situation.

"The president spoke to people in various places and the next day Prime Minister Gordon Brown spoke to Mr. Zardari and U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice spoke to Shri Pranab Mukherjee, India's external minister," Hassan told Sky News. "It was probably because of that reason why the tension that was building up was eased a little.”

There was no response to the claims made by Hassan from the Foreign Office.

"We do not comment on security issues,” A spokeswoman told Sky News.

Following the attacks at the end of last month which left more than 170 dead, Indian politicians were quick to point the finger of blame at Pakistan.

An Indian intelligence report seen by The Sunday Times claims the 10 terrorist commandos involved in the Mumbai attacks were among 500 trained to elite standards by Pakistan army and navy instructors.

Details were leaked as Indian officials accused Pakistan’s powerful Inter-Services Intelligence agency (ISI) of directly supporting the attack. They claimed to have the names of the gunmen’s ISI trainers and handlers and to have intercepted internet phone calls between them, the Times reported.

The Indian intelligence report claims the Mumbai gunmen were among a large group of volunteer “fedayeen” trained in commando tactics by Pakistan army and navy instructors over 18 months from December 2006.

“The training of these 500 men was in three phases. The first was basic physical fitness and firearms training. The second was marine navigation and swimming. The third involved training to sabotage underwater installations such as oil rigs, ships and submarines,” one official said.

“They were trained to a level of U.S. Seals or Pakistani marine commandos. They were elite. Ten of these men were the ones who attacked Mumbai.”

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Click here to read more on this story from the Times of London.