NY police simulates Mumbai attack
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Last Updated: Tuesday, December 21, 2010, 13:58
New York: Sensing that New York remains on the terrorist hit-list, the city police simulated a Mumbai-type attack to gauge its preparedness in the event of a similar strike that killed 166 people in India's financial hub more than two years ago.

The New York Police Department (NYPD) was one of the few which sent its team of investigators to Mumbai in the immediate aftermath of the 26/11 attacks to learn lessons from the terrorist strike in which ten gunmen went on a rampage.

Since then NYPD has taken several measures to prevent such an attack and has held several real time exercises, including the one which it conducted early this month.

"The Mumbai attack two years ago was a bit of a game changer," Mitchell Silber, head of the NYPD's intelligence analysis division, told 'The Wall Street Journal'.

"It was a model that most counter-terrorism practitioners hadn't really considered. The armed gunmen roaming around the city taking hostages, that wasn't something, we had seen by any 'jihadist' group. That was a real eye-opener," he said.

The police officer said the more NYPD officials learnt about the Mumbai attacks "the more similarities we saw between Mumbai city and New York City."

Both, he said, are financial centres; both are surrounded by water on three sides; and both get intense media attention.

The latest simulation made additional sense, Silber said, in the light of rumours this past fall that 'jihadists' were planning another 'Mumbai-style' attack somewhere in Europe.

According to The Wall Street Journal, the simulation exercise was held on December, 3 when more than 40 senior commanders took part and a facilitator introduced "injects," or new complications, into the exercise.

Bureau Report

First Published: Tuesday, December 21, 2010, 13:58

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