Chicago, May 26: Mumbai attack co-accused David Headley today told a US court that a Pakistani Navy man was present during discussions with his ISI handler Major Iqbal on landing sites and arrival of LeT terrorists by sea.
Headley also said he had attended over 50 training sessions with the powerful Pakistan's intelligence agency and that he always briefed Iqbal first during his visits to Paksitan. Iqbal was briefed at a Lahore safehouse, he said.
The 50-year-old Pakistani-American gave details of the Mumbai attack plot involving his Pakistani handlers while being cross-examined by the defence attorney Charles D Swift on the fourth day of the trial of Tahawwur Rana, a Pakistani of Canadian origin and another co-accused in the case.
Headley said ISI provided him a special discourse in Lahore for carrying out surveillance ahead of the Mumbai carnage dissatisfied with the military and espionage training received by him from the Pakistan-based terror outfit Lashkar-e-Taiba(LeT)
“ISI did provide me (espionage) training,” he said, adding that he had attended 50 training sessions over a period of time.
Headley replied in the affirmative when asked by Swift if anyone from the Pakistan naval establishment was present during meetings with Iqbal on landing sites in Mumbai to carry out the attack.
“When discussing the landing site, someone from the Pakistan Navy was present—clean shaved, military bearing, hair cut.”
Q) Do your know his name?
A) Abdur Rahman was his name.
During questioning, Headley also said he did not know anyone in ISI above Major Iqbal.
Headley also beleived that his LeT handler Sajid Mir had a separate handler in the ISI.
The training by the Pakistan intelligence agency to Headley was provided by Iqbal on the streets and in a two-storey safe house in Lahore near the airport, Headley told the jury during the course of questioning by Swift.
Headley told the court that when he met Major Iqbal in 2006, he expressed dissatisfaction at the military and espionage training that he had received from the LeT earlier.
Major Iqbal, who was identified by Headley as ‘Chaudhery Khan', told him that the training received from LeT was “not very good” and was “very elementary”, so he decided to give instructions to him.
It was a two-storey house in a residential neighbourhood and there was a small compound outside the house, Headley said when pressed by Swift during the closing hours on the third day of the trial yesterday.
The statements formed part of the testimony of Headley, who has pleaded guilty.
These disclosures, which further cements India's charges that elements of ISI were involved in the 26/11, is also corroborated by information given by federal prosecutors in the documents to the court, which have been unsealed.
Headley said he had taken videos of the Taj Hotel in Mumbai several times and also inside of a train station in CST.
Q) Video surveillance at railway station was an egress route(act of getting out of target area) A) Yes
Q) That was Major Iqbal planning A) Yes
Q) You were not detected? A) Yes
Q) This is the landing site, you identified A) Yes
Q) What u were looking for? A) Looking for something safe where we could not be detected.
Headley said he went to the Taj to video the area on numerous times and that he had stayed in the Taj on April 7, 2007 along with his second wife (from Morocco) with me.
He testified he used the occasion to video tape and take pictures and that his second wife was covered in a veil. PTI