26/11 Mumbai terror attack: Israel bans Lashkar-e-Taiba; will India ban Hamas now?


Israel has banned Lashkar-e-Taiba and said that the terror outfit is ‘responsible for murder of Indians’.

Mumbai: Smoke is seen billowing out of the ground and first floor of the Taj Hotel in south Mumbai during security personnel's 'Operation Cyclone' following the 26/11 terror attacks in 2008. PTI Photo (PTI)

Israel has banned the terrorist outfit Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) while saying that the organisation is responsible for the “murder of Indians”. The ban comes around the 15th year of the commemoration of the Mumbai terror attacks on November 26, 2008. Israel’s ban symbolises the occasion as it called the outfit a ‘deadly’ and ‘reprehensible’ terror organisation.

The Indian government did not seek this action to be done. The Israel Embassy in India sent a press release stating that the state of Israel had officially finished all relevant processes and satisfied all checks and regulations as a result of adding Lashkar-e-Taiba to the Israeli list of unlawful terror organisations.

The statement highlights that Israel lists only those terror organisations that are actively operating against it, be it from within or around its borders. Similarly, it lists those that affect India, those globally recognised by the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) or the US State Department. 

“Israel ministers of Defence and Foreign Affairs have jointly worked in last few months towards an expedited and extraordinary listing of the Lashkar -e- Taiba organization on this date, to highlight the importance of a Unified Global Front in combating terrorism,” ANI quoted the statement as saying.

“Lashkar-e-Taiba is a deadly and reprehensible terror organization, responsible for the murder of hundreds of Indian civilians as well as others. Its heinous actions on November 26, 2008, still reverberate in force, through all peace-seeking nations and societies,” the statement added.

“The state of Israel offers its sincere condolences to all victims of terrorism and to the survivors and bereaved families of the Mumbai attacks, including those in Israel. We stand with you united in the hope for a better peaceful future,” It also says.

Will India ban Hamas now?

“I think that it is also time to officially designate Hamas also in India as a terror organisation,” Naor Gilon, Israeli Ambassador to India, earlier said during a briefing with the media in New Delhi. He pointed to the United States, EU, Canada and Australia as countries that have already done this.

India’s Foreign Ministry previously refrained from calling Hamas a terrorist group, referring to it as a legal matter to be taken up by the relevant authorities. However, it did refer to the October 7 attacks as a terrorist attack.

“As you are aware, the designation of a terrorist organization under Indian laws is a legal matter. I would refer you to the relevant authorities in this. I think we’ve been very clear that we see this as a terrorist attack. But on the designation part, the relevant authorities are the best place to respond to it,” said MEA official spokesperson Arindam Bagchi during a briefing with the media in October.

Ambassador Gilon stated that Israel had been in touch with Indian authorities about the matter. At the same time, he also stressed that the country was not applying any pressure on India in this matter. Gilon also stated that this was not the first time that such conversations had taken place and added that discussions were ongoing.

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