India Remembers Mumbai Terror Attacks, Urges Pakistan to Prosecute Perpetrators

A man pays homage in front of portraits of police officers killed in the Mumbai terror attack outside the Taj Mahal Palace hotel, one of the sites of the attack, on the second anniversary of the attack in Mumbai, 26 Nov 2010

Two years ago, a group of terrorists based in Pakistan launched deadly attacks in the Indian city of Mumbai. Now, on the second anniversary of the attacks, India is calling on Pakistan to help bring the perpetrators to justice. New Delhi's top diplomat says Pakistan must also do more to dismantle what he calls its "terror machine."

In memorial services around the country, and in social media forums like Twitter, Indians paid tribute Friday to civilians killed in the Mumbai terror attacks two years ago - and the security forces who tried to protect them.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh issued a statement saluting the courage, unity and resolve of the residents of Mumbai and the bravery of the soldiers who ended the terrorist attacks.

Ten terrorists from the Pakistan-based group Lashkar-e-Taiba came ashore in Mumbai two years ago on this date, infamously known here as "26/11." One hundred sixty-six people were killed and more than 300 others were wounded in their three day shooting spree, which targeted luxury hotels in various parts of the city. Nine of the assailants were killed. One was caught, and is appealing a death sentence he received in a Mumbai court.

Indian External Affairs Minister S.M. Krishna used the occasion to admonish Pakistan for what New Delhi views as the government's slowness in combatting terrorism.

"I call upon Pakistan to dismantle the terror machine operating with impunity in territories under its control and to bring all the perpetrators of the Mumbai terror attack to speedy justice," said Krishna.

India accuses Pakistan of needlessly delaying the trial of seven Lashkar-e-Taiba operatives it accuses of planning the attacks. Pakistan has also failed to hand over voice samples to be compared with mobile phone intercepts Indian security captured as the 2008 attacks were underway.

New Delhi has long accused Pakistan of using terror groups as a proxy for objectives in which it wants deniability. Minister Krishna says terror is never an appropriate tool.

"No cause can ever justify terror either by state or non-state actor," said Krishna.

Six Americans were killed in the 26/11 attacks. U.S. Ambassador to India Timothy Roemer says the United States will stand "shoulder to shoulder with India." The two countries are in the process of deepening their partnership in counter-terrorism tactical capabilities.