The U.S. had reservations about India sharing information with all countries that had lost their citizens in the 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks, saying it was “premature” and feared that it would undermine essential law enforcement efforts and forestall further India-Pakistan cooperation.
“We believe it is premature for the Indians to be considering a broad dissemination of information on the attack until the investigation has been completed, In this regard, we note that the FBI [Federal Bureau of Investigation] has just presented a long list of information it is still seeking from the Indians to advance its own investigation,” the then U.S. Ambassador in Islamabad, Anne W. Patterson, said in a secret cable sent early last year and made public by WikiLeaks.
Ms. Patterson advised the State Department to urge India to delay the release of information about its investigation until intelligence and law enforcement-sharing with the U.S. and the government of Pakistan moved forward.
The envoy believed there were Lashkar-e-Taiba sleeper and other cells still in India, Nepal, Bangladesh and Pakistan, as well as many law enforcement leads which needed to be pursued, the cable said.
“To prevent another potential attack, we need to keep channels of cooperation and information sharing open. We are concerned that the Indians' premature public dissemination of this information will undermine essential law enforcement efforts and forestall further Indo-Pak cooperation. Our goal is not only to bring the perpetrators of this attack to justice, but also to begin a dialogue that will reduce tensions between India and Pakistan.”
The cable said Inter-Services Intelligence Director-General Ahmad Shuja Pasha had just approved the sharing of tearline information on Pakistan's investigation with Indian intelligence, after assurances from the CIA that information would be tightly held in intelligence channels only, and noted that gaining the approval of the Government of Pakistan for this release was a significant step forward for the Pakistanis.
“If [Lt. Gen.] Pasha is embarrassed by what is essentially public dissemination without the Indians providing the results of their own investigation to Pakistan, it will undercut Pakistan's ability to purse its investigation, generate a public backlash in Pakistan, and could undermine [Lt. Gen.] Pasha personally,” the cable said.