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Pakistan nabs key suspect in 2008 Mumbai attacks; 166 died, 6 of them Israelis

Zaikur Rehman Lakhvi seized in Lahore on terror financing charges; alleged to be a leader of Lashker-e-Taiba group that targeted hotels, railway station, restaurant, Chabad center

Pakistani security personnel escort Zaki-ur-Rehman Lakhvi, alleged mastermind of the 2008 Mumbai attacks, as he leaves the court after a hearing in Islamabad on January 1, 2015. photo credit: AFP/Aamir QURESHI)
Pakistani security personnel escort Zaki-ur-Rehman Lakhvi, alleged mastermind of the 2008 Mumbai attacks, as he leaves the court after a hearing in Islamabad on January 1, 2015. photo credit: AFP/Aamir QURESHI)

Pakistan’s security forces arrested Saturday an alleged leader of the terror group that was behind the bloody 2008 Mumbai attacks in India.

An official with the Pakistani counterterrorism police, Shakil Ahmed, said that Zaikur Rehman Lakhvi was seized in the eastern city of Lahore, on terrorism financing charges.

Lakhvi is alleged to be a leader of the Lashker-e-Taiba group that organized the Mumbai attacks in 2008 that killed 166 people.

The coordinated attacks on the city of nearly 20 million people hit luxury hotels, the main railway station, a restaurant popular with tourists and the city’s Chabad center, where six Israelis were killed.

A section of the Chabad House that still has the bullet holes from the 2008 terror attacks in Mumbai, India seen on January 18, 2018. (Joshua Davidovich/Times of Israel)

Lakhvi was detained days after the Mumbai attacks but released in 2015 by Pakistani courts.

Pakitani authorities allege that Lakhvi was running a dispensary in Lahore as a front for financing militant activities.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu meets with Moshe Holtzberg, the son of Rabbi Gavriel and Rivky Holtzberg, who were killed in the November 26, 2008, terror attack in Mumbai, during a memorial for the victims of the attack at Nariman Chabad House in Mumbai on January 18, 2018. (GPO)

Lakhvi was a prominent figure in Hafiz Saeed’s charity Jamaat-ud-Dawa, which is believed to be a front for Lashker-e-Taiba.

Rabbi Gavriel and Rivkah Holtzberg (Chabad)

Saeed, who has been designated a terrorist by the US Justice Department and has a $10 million bounty on his head, is presently serving multiple jail terms in Pakistan after being convicted in several cases in recent months. The Pakistani government has seized Saeed’s extensive network of mosques, schools, seminaries and charities and other assets in the country.

Relations between Pakistan and India were strained after the attack on India’s financial hub in 2008. The rival South Asian powers have fought two wars since gaining independence from Britain in 1947.

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