Commonwealth Games raises security

Updated: October 13, 2010, 10:22 AM ET
Associated Press

NEW DELHI -- The security clampdown at the Commonwealth Games went into overdrive Wednesday, a day ahead of the closing ceremonies, as reports emerged overnight of a potential terror threat.

London's Daily Mail reported that Indian intelligence had warned of a militant terrorist plot to attack Delhi on Thursday.

The report cited unconfirmed intelligence indicating that the Pakistan-based Lashkar e Taiba group, which carried out the Mumbai attacks in 2008, was targeting the Indian capital on the day of the closing ceremonies.

Last week, the Indian military and police seized 10 improvised explosive devices -- or IEDs -- hidden in wooden boxes in Jammu city, an army officer told The Associated Press. The officer spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the media.

Jammu is roughly 360 miles north of Delhi, and the officer said the destination for the explosives was not immediately known.

The Daily Excelsior, a local English-language newspaper, reported on Oct. 9 that "the possibility that the explosives were to be taken to New Delhi in a bus by one of the militants, who is at large, couldn't be ruled out."

The explosives were seized from four people, including a police official, and all four have been arrested, according to a police officer who also spoke on condition of anonymity.

Despite warnings of security issues in the lead-up to the event, which began Oct. 3, the games thus far have been free of any major problems.

Commonwealth Games Federation president Mike Fennell said he was unaware of any "new, credible, specific terror threat."

Fennell said he was pleased with the way the Delhi games had been conducted. Two weeks before the games began, and when news emerged of the filthy state of the unfinished athletes village, there was even talk of canceling the event.

"I think that what has happened here demonstrates quite clearly that there is a very strong future for the games," Fennell said. "We had a lot of questions about cancellation, but the games have been celebrated in very fine style. Obviously we have to address some of the concerns and improve the product as we go along."

The next Commonwealth Games are scheduled for Glasgow, Scotland from July 23 to Aug. 3, 2014.


Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press

ALSO SEE