New Delhi: Israel hit out at Iran accusing it to be behind the explosion in a car belonging to its embassy in Delhi on Monday saying that it was a terror attack. In a strong reaction Israeli Prime Minister directly blamed Iran for the attacks in Delhi and Georgia.
Addressing lawmakers of his Likud Party, Benjamin Netanyahu said, "In all those cases, the elements behind these attacks were Iran and its protégé Hezbollah." He warned that such incidents would not be tolerated and that Israel would get back at the perpetrators of the crime.
Speaking to a TV channel, Alon Ushpiz, Israeli Ambassador to India too spoke in the same language, “We are all aware of the statements coming from the Israeli PM. This is not a co-incidence. Iran is going after the Israeli people on daily basis.” Nonetheless he assured that they felt ‘very secure’ in India and that they had ‘full confidence’ in the Indian authorities.
Israel’s assertion that it was a terror attack appears to be based on the fact that two more coordinated attacks were launched at its embassy’s in Georgia and Amsterdam today - a day after the fourth anniversary of the assassination of Hezbollah military chief Imad Mughniyeh, who was killed in Damascus on February 12, 2008.
Meanwhile the Ministry of Home Affairs while confirming the attack said, “At 3.20 pm today the Israeli embassy SUV was targeted.” “Initial reports suggest that a foreign substance was attached to the rear of the vehicle,” the Union Home Secretary added.
The official confirmation also came from the Delhi Police. Delhi Police Commissioner BK Gupta said, “It is an Israeli Embassy car. The woman who was injured in today’s attack is working with the embassy along with her husband.” He added, “According to an eye witness a motorcycle-born person attached something to the rear of the SUV belonging to the embassy. There was a mild explosion after which the car burst into flames. The case will be investigated by special cell of the Delhi Police.”
While condemning the attack in Delhi today, External Affairs Minister SM Krishna said, “Have spoken to the Israeli foreign minister Avigdor Lieberman and have assured them that the law of the land will take its due course,” he said. “India very strongly condemns such incidents. The culprits will be brought to justice at the earliest. We will keep the embassy posted of the all developments,” he added.
The Innova SUV car, bearing diplomatic number 109 CD 35, went up in flames after it exploded near a petrol pump, metres away from 7 Race Course Road – PM’s residence. Another car in the vicinity was also damaged.
Intelligence, ATS and bomb squad sleuths cordoned off the entire area and have collected evidence.
Israeli security authorities raised the level of alert worldwide following the attacks.
The Indian government too ordered tightening of security of diplomatic missions, especially of Israel, US and other Western countries, across the country.
The Israeli woman diplomat, who was injured in a suspected terror attack on an embassy car here, tonight underwent two major surgeries and her condition was stated to be "critical but stable".
Tal Yehoshua, wife of Israeli Defence Attache in the
Embassy, suffered splinter injuries in the attack and was
admitted to the Primus Hospital here.
"Her surgery is over...she continues to remain critical
but stable. She will be under observation for some time
because she had undergone two major surgeries," a spokesperson
of the hospital said.
Dr Deep Makkar, in-charge of international patients at
the hospital, said, "She has suffered spinal and liver
injuries but her vitals are stable."
With PTI inputs
First Published: Monday, February 13, 2012, 20:05