News

    US Offers $10 Million Bounty for 2008 Mumbai Terror Suspect

    Hafiz Mohammad Saeed, the leader of a banned Islamic group Jamaat-ud-Dawa  is seen during an anti-Indian rally to show solidarity with Indian Kashmiris, in Lahore, Pakistan, February 5, 2010. (file photo)
    Hafiz Mohammad Saeed, the leader of a banned Islamic group Jamaat-ud-Dawa is seen during an anti-Indian rally to show solidarity with Indian Kashmiris, in Lahore, Pakistan, February 5, 2010. (file photo)

    The United States is offering a bounty of up to $10 million for the Pakistani man accused of masterminding the deadly 2008 terrorist attacks in Mumbai.

    The State Department's "Rewards for Justice" website on late Monday announced the reward for information leading to Hafiz Mohammad Saeed's capture and conviction. The reward is the second highest bounty offered by the U.S.

    Saeed is the founding member of the Pakistani-based militant group Lashkar-e-Taiba, which is suspected of carrying out several terrorist attacks on Indian soil.  He currently heads the Jamaat-ud-Dawa charity which is largely seen as a front for the militant group.

    Top U.S. Rewards for Justice Bounties
    • Ayman al-Zawahiri, al-Qaida leader - up to $25 million.
    • Abu Du’a, senior leader of al-Qaida in Iraq - up to $10 million.
    • Mullah Omar, Taliban leader - up to $10 million.
    • Hafiz Mohammad Saeed, mastermind of 2008 Mumbai attacks - up to $10 million.
    • Yasin al-Suri, senior al-Qaida facilitator based in Iran - up to $10 million.

    Saeed told reporters Tuesday that the U.S. issued the bounty because he is urging Pakistan not to reopen its border with Afghanistan to NATO supply convoys. The cleric demanded that Washington put forward any evidence of his involvement in terrorist activities. He later told the Pakistani GEO television that the the U.S. wants to silence him and discourage the public from supporting him. Saeed also called for the U.S. to leave Afghanistan and the region.

    Pakistani authorities held Saeed under house arrest for about six months after the Mumbai attacks. He later was released, without charge.  Pakistan’s Supreme Court said there was insufficient evidence to detain him.

    The November 2008 terrorist attack on India's financial hub, carried out by Lashkar-e-Taiba, killed 166 people, including six Americans.

    In Washington, U.S. State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland told reporters Tuesday the bounty on Saeed is about "justice being done" and that there should be no impunity for those who kill Americans overseas. She emphasized that the reward was not just for information leading to Saeed's arrest, but also for information leading to his conviction.

    Pakistan's government did not officially comment Tuesday on the bounty. But a key member of the ruling coalition, Mushahid Hussain, rejected the U.S. decision and told VOA it could undermine the ongoing parliamentary review of Islamabad's ties with Washington.

    "This will not go down well with the people of Pakistan. And as I said, it is politically motivated because in the past the U.S. had put some [Afghan] Taliban leaders on the list of terrorists and now those same Taliban leaders have been de-notified for political reasons because the U.S. is now negotiating with the Taliban for an exit from Afghanistan," said Hussain. "So putting somebody on the list or removing somebody from the list has nothing to do with the action of that person alleged or otherwise, but it is based on politics and pragmatism, and this seems to be the case of Hafiz Saeed also."

    India has long accused Lashkar-e-Taiba of carrying out the attack, with the help of Pakistan's military and spy agency.

    Watch related video

    India's Minister of External Affairs S.M. Krishna said the U.S. move reflects the commitment of India and the U.S. to bringing the perpetrators of the Mumbai attack to justice.

    "It also sends a strong message to the Lashkar-e-Taiba, and also its members and patrons, that the international community remains united in combating terrorism," said Krishna.

    Krishna also said India would be "quite comfortable" if the U.S. "proceeds to act on Hafiz Saeed," who is one of India's most wanted fugitives.

    Saeed is a prominent cleric in Pakistan, often appearing on TV shows and giving public speeches during rallies. While Lashkar-e-Taiba is officially banned in Pakistan, some analysts say Islamabad has done little to crack down on its activities.

    Pakistani defense analyst Lieutenant General Talat Masood says that with the bounty, the U.S. wants to put pressure on Pakistan because of Saeed's opposition to the NATO supply route through Pakistan. Masood also said Saeed's Jamaat-ud-Dawa charity is "an embarrassment to Pakistan."

    U.S. officials also have announced a $2 million bounty for the group's deputy leader, Hafiz Abdul Rahman Makki.

    Lashkar-e-Taiba is officially designated as a foreign terrorist organization by the United States.

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: Paul E. Bahre
    April 04, 2012 5:52 AM
    How come the US is putting the bounty out? Why isn't India putting a bounty out. Why isn't India getting in the fight. Their country was attacked after all? Why is it up to us to get somebody wanted in India? I can understand the US wants this guy out of the picture.

    by: michael
    April 04, 2012 4:54 AM
    It is probably completely unethical to place legal bounty on human life, but terrorism also devalues human life, so protection of human life ought to be the first aim for both sides, then details worked out after that

    by: basudeb dey
    April 03, 2012 12:32 PM
    This step should have been taken 4 years ago. Now I am pretty sure Hafiz Mohammad is being sheltered by Pak army chief. Most likely he is hiding in Gen Kayani's official residence .

    by: Dick Brandlon
    April 03, 2012 11:48 AM
    We seem to think that dangling huge amounts of money (taxpayers') will solve any problem. The reason we're getting so much S**T from the Islamic world is that our value system is completely different. In a world of an eye for an eye, every action demands a reaction, whether we like it or not. Money won't provide a solution.

    by: supershwa
    April 03, 2012 11:33 AM
    Cool - so where's the money coming from? Mitt Romney? Bill Gates? Couldn't be the U.S. Treasury...it's empty.

    by: Zippy the Pinhead
    April 03, 2012 11:06 AM
    Is the president of the US offering money for the killing of someone? I think he should give back his Nobel Peace Prize for that alone.

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Brexit Vote Plunges Global Markets Into Uncharted Territoryi
    X
    June 24, 2016 9:38 PM
    British voters plunged global markets into unknown territory after they voted Thursday to leave the European Union. The results of the Brexit vote, the term coined to describe the referendum, caught many off guard. Analysts say the resulting volatility could last for weeks, perhaps longer. Mil Arcega reports.
    Video

    Video Brexit Vote Plunges Global Markets Into Uncharted Territory

    British voters plunged global markets into unknown territory after they voted Thursday to leave the European Union. The results of the Brexit vote, the term coined to describe the referendum, caught many off guard. Analysts say the resulting volatility could last for weeks, perhaps longer. Mil Arcega reports.
    Video

    Video Orlando Shooting Changes Debate on Gun Control

    It’s been nearly two weeks since the largest mass shooting ever in the United States. Despite public calls for tighter gun control laws, Congress is at an impasse. Democratic lawmakers resorted to a 1960s civil rights tactic to portray their frustration. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti explains how the Orlando, Florida shooting is changing the debate.
    Video

    Video Tunisian Fishing Town Searches for Jobs, Local Development Solutions

    As the European Union tries to come to grips with its migrant crisis, some newcomers are leaving voluntarily. But those returning to their home countries face an uncertain future.  Five years after Tunisia's revolution, the tiny North African country is struggling with unrest, soaring unemployment and plummeting growth. From the southern Tunisian fishing town of Zarzis, Lisa Bryant takes a look for VOA at a search for local solutions.
    Video

    Video 'American Troops' in Russia Despite Tensions

    Historic battle re-enactment is a niche hobby with a fair number of adherents in Russia where past military victories are played-up by the Kremlin as a show of national strength. But, one group of World War II re-enactors in Moscow has the rare distinction of choosing to play western ally troops. VOA's Daniel Schearf explains.
    Video

    Video Experts: Very Few Killed in US Gun Violence Are Victims of Mass Shootings

    The deadly shooting at a Florida nightclub has reignited the debate in the U.S. over gun control. Although Congress doesn't provide government health agencies funds to study gun violence, public health experts say private research has helped them learn some things about the issue. VOA's Carol Pearson reports.
    Video

    Video Trump Unleashes Broadside Against Clinton to Try to Ease GOP Doubts

    Recent public opinion polls show Republican Donald Trump slipping behind Democrat Hillary Clinton in the presidential election matchup for November. Trump trails her both in fundraising and campaign organization, but he's intensifying his attacks on the former secretary of state. VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone reports.
    Video

    Video Muslim American Mayor Calls for Tolerance

    Syrian-born Mohamed Khairullah describes himself as "an American mayor who happens to be Muslim." As the three-term mayor of Prospect Park, New Jersey, he believes his town of 6,000 is an example of how ethnicity and religious beliefs should not determine a community's leadership. Ramon Taylor has this report from Prospect Park.
    Video

    Video Internal Rifts Over Syria Policy Could Be Headache for Next US President

    With the Obama administration showing little outward enthusiasm for adopting a more robust Syria policy, there is a strong likelihood that the internal discontent expressed by State Department employees will roll over to the next administration. VOA State Department correspondent Pam Dockins reports.
    Video

    Video Senegal to Park Colorful ‘Cars Rapide’ Permanently

    Brightly painted cars rapide are a hallmark of Dakar, offering residents a cheap way to get around the capital city since 1976. But the privately owned minibuses are scheduled to be parked for good in late 2018, as Ricci Shryock reports for VOA.
    Video

    Video Florida Gets $1 Million in Emergency Government Funding for Orlando

    The U.S. government has granted $1 million in emergency funding to the state of Florida to cover the costs linked to the June 12 massacre in Orlando. U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch announced the grant Tuesday in Orlando, where she met with survivors of the shooting attack that killed 49 people. Zlatica Hoke reports.
    Video

    Video How to Print Impossible Shapes with Metal

    3-D printing with metals is rapidly becoming more advanced. As printers become more affordable, the industry is partnering with universities to refine processes for manufacturing previously impossible things. A new 3-D printing lab aims to bring the new technology closer to everyday use. VOA's George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Big Somali Community in Minnesota Observes Muslim Religious Feast

    Ramadan is widely observed in the north central US state of Minnesota, which a large Muslim community calls home. VOA Somali service reporter Mohmud Masadde files this report from Minneapolis, the state's biggest city.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora