Washington: The United States Government has declared the Indian Mujahideen a terrorist outfit.
In a statement, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton designated the Indian Mujahideen (IM) as a Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO) under Section 219 of the Immigration and Nationality Act and as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist under section 1(b) of Executive Order 13224.
An India-based terrorist group with significant links to Pakistan, IM is responsible for dozens of bomb attacks throughout India since 2005, and has caused the deaths of hundreds of innocent civilians.
The IM maintains close ties to other U.S.- designated terrorist entities, including Pakistan-based Lashkar e-Tayyiba (LeT), Jaish-e-Mohammed (JEM) and Harakat ul-Jihad-i-Islami (HUJI).
The statement further said that the IM's stated goal is to carry out terrorist actions against non-Muslims in furtherance of its ultimate objective - an Islamic Caliphate across South Asia.
The IM's primary method of attack is multiple coordinated bombings in crowded areas against economic and civilian targets to maximize terror and casualties.
In 2010, IM carried out the bombing of a popular German bakery in Pune, India frequented by tourists, killing 17 and injuring over 60 people. In 2008, an IM attack in Delhi killed 30 people.
Also in 2008, IM was responsible for 16 synchronized bomb blasts in crowded urban centers and a local hospital that killed 38 and injured more than 100 in Ahmedabad.
The statement, which was released by the US Embassy in New Delhi also said that the IM has also played a facilitative role in the 2008 Mumbai attack carried out by LeT that killed 163 people, including six Americans.
"These designations highlight the threat posed by IM not only to Western interests, but to India, a close U.S. partner. The Indian populace has borne the brunt of IM's wanton violence and today's (Thursday's) actions illustrate our solidarity with the Indian Government," stated Ambassador Daniel Benjamin, the Department of State's Coordinator for Counter-terrorism.
These designations play a critical role in our fight against terrorism and are an effective means of curtailing support for terrorist activities and pressuring groups to abandon terrorism.
The consequences of these designations include a prohibition against knowingly providing material support or resources to, or engaging in other transactions with, the Indian Mujahideen, and the freezing of all property and interests in property of the organization that are in the United States, or come within the United States, or the control of U.S. persons.
The Department of State took these actions in consultation with the Department of Justice and the Department of Treasury.