Seven of the terrorists who brought carnage to Mumbai are British, Indian government sources claimed yesterday.
They said two British-born Pakistanis are under arrest. And another five suspects are said to have been born and raised here.
Two of the seven are from Leeds, one is from Bradford and one from Hartlepool, the sources claimed. All are aged between 20 and 26.
The claims were made as the death toll in Mumbai reached 155 — with predictions it could go as high as 200.
The Hartlepool suspect was allegedly found in the five-star Taj Mahal Palace hotel, scene of some of the most horrific killings. The man from Bradford and one from Leeds were allegedly discovered on the 17th floor of the Oberoi-Trident Hotel.
A second man from Leeds was allegedly captured near a jetty after a gang of around 25 terrorists landed in Mumbai by boat on Wednesday.
The suspects were allegedly found with documentation, possibly including passports, which revealed their origin.
The sources say they also spoke to each other in a heavily-accented Punjabi common in UK Pakistani communities. Gordon Brown yesterday urged caution saying it was “premature” to draw any conclusions.
He said Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had not told of him of “any evidence at this stage” that Britons were behind the massacres. […]
The Foreign Office and MI6 were last night trying to establish the facts amid chaotic scenes in Mumbai as Indian commandos continued operations to flush out the remaining gunmen.
If the terrorists are Britons, the UK security service will have to urgently discover how they slipped through the surveillance net. In the wake of 7/7 London bombings the monitoring of militant and disaffected Muslim groups has been tightened up.
The security services were criticised after 7/7 for not keeping better track of the bombers. Since the early 2000s Britain has had an unwelcome reputation as a haven for Islamic radicals. […]