Terror boat sparks debate

Debate about motives of boat continue.

India’s ‘terror’ boat blast sparks debate

Stephen Spark

A fishing boat that reportedly exploded on 1 January when ordered to stop by the Indian Coast Guard (ICG) may have carried smugglers, rather than terrorists, as the ICG claims, some Indian commentators are arguing.

When told to halt their vessel, the four crew members hid in a below-deck compartment and set fire to the boat, triggering the blast, according to the Ministry of Defence (MoD).

But claims the action foiled an attack are being disputed amid fears that fishermen or small-scale fuel smugglers were mistaken for terrorists.

Commentators have pointed to apparent inconsistencies in official reports, saying these call into question their accuracy.

MoD and ICG statements say intercepted communications on the Thuraya mobile phone network on 31 December indicated that “terror suspects” were leaving the Pakistani port of Keti Bandar, near Karachi, bound for Gujarat.

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Source: ihsmaritime360.com

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