Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano visited Mumbai on May 24-25 to meet with her Indian counterparts and law enforcement officials--a critical step forward in the ongoing U.S.-India strategic partnership to coordinate counterterrorism and law enforcement efforts between the two countries and ensure the safety and security of U.S. and Indian citizens.
"India is a steadfast partner and friend of the United States. The tragic terrorist attacks on Mumbai on Nov. 26, 2008, are a stark reminder of why we must continue working together to enhance our shared security," said Secretary Napolitano. "The United States remains committed to working with India to strengthen both nations' law enforcement and counterterrorism efforts to ensure that the citizens and communities of the United States and India remain safe, secure and resilient."
On May 24, Secretary Napolitano toured the U.S. Consulate in Mumbai and met with acting U.S. Consulate General to Mumbai James Herman to discuss the Obama administration's ongoing commitment to partnering with India on critical port, border and maritime security operations--highlighting the long history of information sharing between the United States and India to enhance security while facilitating legal travel and trade.
Later that day, Secretary Napolitano met with Maharashtra State Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan, Home Minister R.R. Patil, and Commissioner of the Mumbai Police Arup Patnaik to discuss best practices for effective policing in large cities of both nations--including the development of analytic capabilities, training for frontline and investigative personnel, and expansion of law enforcement efforts to detect, prevent and respond to violence and terrorism--as well as continued collaborative counterterrorism efforts between the United States and India.
Secretary Napolitano also commemorated Indian law enforcement personnel who lost their lives in the devastating Nov. 26, 2008 terror attacks in a wreath laying ceremony at the Mumbai Police Memorial. The memorial was dedicated on November 26, 2009--one year following the attacks--and honors the 16 Mumbai Police personnel killed during the November 2008 attacks, including the Mumbai Anti-Terrorism Squad Chief Hemant Karkare, Commissioner of Mumbai Police Ashok Kamte and Encounter Specialist Inspector Vijay Salaskar. On May 25, Secretary Napolitano also received a security briefing at the Taj Hotel--one of the hotels attacked during the terror attacks on Nov. 26, 2008.
Secretary Napolitano will continue her visit to India in New Delhi on May 25, where she will jointly launch the U.S.-India Homeland Security dialogue--a critical new component of the U.S.--India Strategic Dialogue that will increase communication and information-sharing between the U.S. and India on counterterrorism and other issues that affect our security--with Indian officials, including the Indian Ambassador and Home Minister P. Chidambaram,.
Throughout her trip, Secretary Napolitano has been briefed regularly by Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Administrator Craig Fugate, FEMA Deputy Administrator Rich Serino, and other senior officials on the progressing situation and all disaster relief operations in Missouri, Oklahoma and Texas following the recent storms and tornadoes.