Shahzad 'close friend' of 26/11 mastermind

Quoting sources, ABC news said Shahzad was a close childhood friend of one of the alleged masterminds of the 26/11 Mumbai carnage. However, the television network did not identify the Pakistani mastermind.

The Pakistani Taliban are denying any role in the botched car bombing, but have praised Shahzad for a “brave job done”, ABC said, adding, that the suspected bomber was also in contact with former Tehreek-e-Taliban chief Baitullah Mehsud.
“The Mehsuds had been family friends of Shahzad, who is son of a former high ranking Pakistani military officer,” the American television network said, quoting Pakistani sources.

The US authorities are pressing Shahzad on his claims of terrorist training and a high-level FBI team is in Karachi to question four apprehended JeM members.
Shahzad was in touch with a man named Mohammad Rehan who helped him to travel to Peshawar and then to Waziristan and introduced him to the Taliban.
Rehan is one of the four suspected Jaish militants picked up by Pakistani intelligence for questioning as a search for Shahzad’s terror links has led US and Pakistani investigators to Karachi’s JeM-run Bathha mosque and religious school.
The American television network said an official briefed on FBI interrogation had said that Shahzad had told federal agents that he was angry at CIA missile strikes in Pakistan and suffered a personal crisis.

ABC reproted that Shahzad was also in contact with notorious Yemeni cleric Anwar Awlaki. The New York Times reported that Shahzad was “inspired” by the words of the radical cleric who is a US citizen.”

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