Indian journalist involved in Delhi attack on Israeli embassy also connected to Bangkok bombers
Israel's National Security Advisor Yaakov Amidror scheduled to visit India to discuss last month's bomb attack against the Israeli embassy.
Israel's National Security Advisor Yaakov Amidror is scheduled to visit India on Monday, where he will meet with Indian Home Minister P. Chidambaram to receive updates regarding last month's bomb attack against the Israeli embassy in New Delhi. Amidror will also meet his Indian counterpart, Shivshankar Menon, who is considered one of the most powerful politicians in the current administration.
In the attack, which took place on February 13, Tal Yehoshua Koren, the wife of a Defense Ministry official, was wounded near the Israeli embassy in central Delhi.
Two weeks ago, Haaretz reported that Indian investigators had made significant headway in their investigation of the attack, which pointed to direct Iranian involvement. However, India did not release this information in a bid to avoid public confrontation with the Islamic republic. Media reports in India over the past several days confirm the claim made by Haaretz that Indian police are close to solving the case.
The Indian government still prefers not to point a finger directly at Iran, but last week, New Delhi police announced a breakthrough in their investigation. The breakthrough came after the arrest of Syed Mohammed Kazmi, an Indian national of Iranian origin who worked for the official Iranian news agency.
According to the Indian Tribune newspaper, Kazmi was arrested after police intercepted phone calls between him and Saeid Moradi, one of the attackers apprehended in Delhi. In addition, Kazmi's phone number was written on a piece of paper found in the attackers' safe house in Bangkok.
In recent days, Kazmi has been intensely interrogated by Indian security forces. He is suspected of providing logistical assistance to two members of the elite Quds Force of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard and helping them escape from India back to Iran. One of his friends, journalist Saeed Naqvi, told the Indian newspaper that members of Israel's Mossad participated in Kazmi's interrogation.
Aside from Kazmi, two other suspects were also arrested, yet Indian police still assume that the perpetrators fled the country. According to police, Kazmi was not aware of the complete details of the attack. India Today reported that Kazmi said during his investigation that the attack was planned last year. His assignment included surveillance of the Israeli embassy and recording the license plate numbers of diplomatic vehicles.
Kazmi also told investigators that the two terrorists arrived in New Delhi 15 days before the attack, stayed at a local hotel and prepared the explosives and magnets, one of which was attached to Yehoshua Koren's car.
India Today reported that police found a motorcycle in Kazmi's home which may have been used to track Israeli diplomatic vehicles. "The cell's main member left the motorcycle at Kazmi's house on February 14, before he fled to Iran," a police source was quoted as saying in the newspaper report. In addition, the black motorcycle which was used in the attack itself has been found. It was rented from a car agency on the day of the attack.
Indian security services also said they had found reliable evidence tying the Delhi attack to the attempted terrorist attacks against Israeli targets in Bangkok and Tbilisi. A senior Indian intelligence official told the Deccan Chronicle newspaper that the perpetrators sought to deliver a message to Israel – that Israelis around the world are vulnerable. "We shared this information with other foreign intelligence services," the source said.