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Indian Authorities Name Two Suspects in Bombay Bombings


Indian officials have named two men as the first suspects in the coordinated bombings that struck packed commuter trains in and near Bombay Tuesday, killing 200 people and wounding 700 others.

Indian investigators are looking for Sayyad Zabiuddin and Zulfeqar Fayyaz, who are believed to be the masterminds of the attacks. Their nationalities have not been given.

New Delhi television reports that police are also probing phone calls made to the Pakistani city of Karachi and Dubai minutes before and after the blasts.

But officials said Thursday that the prime suspect in Tuesday's bombings is Lashkar-e-Toiba, a Pakistan-based Islamic militant group that operates in Indian Kashmir. Police in Bombay, also known as Mumbai said the pattern of bombings and the equipment used point to the group. But Lashkar has denied it was involved.

Earlier Thursday, a man claiming to represent al-Qaida called a news agency based in Indian Kashmir to say that the terror network had set up a wing there. He praised the blasts in Bombay, saying they were triggered by India's oppression of minorities and Muslims. The Indian army says it is evaluating the claim.

President Bush telephoned Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to express sympathy and offer U.S. support to India in its war against terrorism.

At least seven bombs exploded on packed commuter trains during the evening rush hour Tuesday in and near Bombay - India's largest city and financial capital in Maharashtra state.

Prime Minister Singh says his government will do whatever is necessary to deal with the challenges ahead, and he has called on India's more than one billion people to take a united stand against violence.

In New York Wednesday, United Nations Security Council members issued a joint statement condemning the train bombings and calling on nations to bring those responsible to justice.

Some information for this report was provided by AP.
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