The US State Department and Israeli diplomats paid tribute to the victims of the 2008 Mumbai terror attacks on Thursday, the twelfth anniversary of the event that left a young Jewish boy orphaned and scores of people dead, including several Israelis.
“On November 26, 2008, approximately 170 people, including six Americans, were killed in a terrorist attack in Mumbai, India. We honor the memory of those killed in this senseless act of violence, and remain steadfast in our commitment to bring those responsible to account,” the State Department said, commemorating the event.
In a video posted to Twitter, Israeli Ambassador to India Ron Malka told Indian journalist Geeta Mohan, “Today, we share the same grief and soul, and we realize we share the same hostilities.”
“Terrorism is a global disease,” he noted, and said the whole world must unite to fight it.
He praised India’s burgeoning ties with Israel, and not only in the realm of counter-terrorism, saying, “I think India and Israel are shining examples for how countries can get united, collaborate, and do beautiful things, not only for themselves, but also the world.”
Malka also said that a memorial to all the victims will be built in the southern city of Eilat. “It’s very important to keep their memory in these days, and respect the memories of those who died,” he said.
The Israeli Embassy in India also marked the anniversary, saying, “Israel stands with the people of India in memory of all those who lost their lives.”
The embassy tweeted an image of a memorial wall at the Chabad house in Mumbai, which shows the names of all the victims.
Former Israeli defense minister Moshe Ya’alon emphasized that justice has yet to be done on behalf of the victims, saying, “Some of those behind the attack, to this day, have not faced justice. Israel, India, and the entire Western world are united in preserving the legacy of the victims, and in collaborating on the fight to eradicate terror throughout the world.”
Referred to in India as “26/11” the attacks were perpetrated by the Pakistani Islamist terrorist group Lashkar-e-Taiba, which carried out coordinated atrocities around the city. Nine of the terrorists were eventually killed by security forces. Hundreds were also wounded in the attacks.
Among the targets was the Chabad center in the city, where terrorists held hostages for hours before the building was stormed by Indian commandos. Six of the hostages were killed, including Rabbi Gavriel Holtzberg and his wife Rivka Holtzberg. Their deaths left their son Moshe orphaned. He was then taken to Israel to live with his grandparents. His nanny, Sandra Samuel, who saved his life, was granted honorary Israeli citizenship. Moshe later met with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi on his visit to Israel.
It is widely believed that many participants in the planning and coordination of the attacks remain in Pakistan under protection of the security services.
Algemeiner Staff. (c) 2020.