Pak ultras using sat-phones for attacks on India

Hiding location of instruments made in the Emirates

The usage of satellite phones by ultras have come into light in some of the major terror strikes in the country, including the Mumbai attacks. Intelligence agencies scanning  terror communications have also expressed concern over the camouflaging of satellite transmissions by Pakistan-based terror groups. 

“Non-state actors in the neighbouring country are using satellite phones. This cannot happen without the tactical approval of government agencies”, sources said.  
The Thuraya network based in the UAE covers most of Europe, the Middle East, North, Central and East Africa, Australia and Asia. Its shareholders include Middle Eastern and North African telecommunication and investment companies. These phones are reportedly easily available in Pakistan for terror outfits like Lashkar-e-Toiba and Jaish-e-Mohammed.
During the investigation into the 26/11 attack, India discussed the issue with the US authorities and sought their help to get details of the satellite phones used by  a section of Pakistan-based groups.

The US authorities had then understood to have used their  leverage with the UAE authorities to help India procure log books of the satellite phones, stored at Thuraya’s master control facility at Sharjah, to establish the presence of terror masterminds in Pakistan.

Recently, intelligence agencies intercepted ‘a real-time’ communication between terrorists and their handlers across the border that led Union Home Ministry to  alert six states, including Karnataka, on the possibilities of terror strikes on or before the Republic Day function on January 26. 

Since the Mumbai attacks, New Delhi has been insisting that Pakistan must bring the 26/11 plotters to justice and take credible steps to dismantle the terror infrastructure on its soil as the pre-condition for the revival of the dialogue process.

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