Wednesday, April 14, 2004
Huge Arms haul in BD

Huge arms haul intrigues India

NEW DELHI: The firepower involved may be enough to keep an army brigade in fighting fettle for a year, but one week after the chance discovery near Chittagong of a massive illegal arms shipment, Indian and Bangladeshi officials have no idea who shipped the weapons or whom they were intended for.

The fact that the Bangladesh coast has emerged as a major point for arms smuggling is known, but the nature of last week's arms seizure has sent intelligence officials in India reeling.

"1290 AK-47s, 1.1 million rounds, 25,020 grenades, 840 rockets - we've never seen anything remotely this big before," an official said.

Officials said that there was no way any one insurgent group in the region - not Ulfa, not the Nepal Maoists - could afford to pay for the shipment by themselves.

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