India helps United Arab Emirates arrest Al Qaida financier
ABU DHABI — The United Arab Emirates was said to have captured the financier of Al Qaida attacks on India.
Diplomatic sources said the UAE worked with India to arrest Abdul Wahid Siddibapa. They said the 32-year-old Siddibapa was identified as the financier of attacks throughout India from 2006 through 2010.
"I cannot comment on the arrest," Indian ambassador T.P. Seetharam said. "But I can tell you Indian and UAE security forces are cooperating at high levels on many security-related issues."
The sources said Siddibapa was arrested in Abu Dhabi in late January 2014. They said Siddibapa, a senior operative of the Al Qaida-aligned Mujahideen, operated businesses in the UAE.
India has long searched for Siddibapa, reported to be a relative of Mujahideen founder Yasin Batkal. Interpol said Siddibapa was linked to at least three bombings, including Bengaluru, Mumbai and New Dehli.
"[He is wanted for] criminal conspiracy, waging war against the country, punishment for terrorist acts, raising funds for terrorist acts, recruiting any person or persons for terrorist acts, conspiracy, member of a terrorist gang/organisation," Interpol said.
The sources said the arrest of Siddibapa marked an increase in Indian security cooperation with the Gulf Cooperation Council. They said the Indian Home Ministry was preparing to send investigators to Abu Dhabi once Siddibapa's identity was confirmed.
"The United Arab Emirates and its neighbour Saudi Arabia have in recent years deported nearly half-a-dozen terror suspects to India and the cooperation between New Delhi and Abu Dhabi comes ahead of the visit of Saudi Crown Prince Salman, who is due to visit India later this month," the Indian Express said on Feb. 4.