Tambe, a resident of Mumbra, allegedly joined the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) in September 2016.
Mumbai: Officials from the ministry of external affairs (MEA) have allegedly established contact with Mumbra’s alleged Islamic State (IS) recruit Tabrez Tambe (28), who left the country last September to join the terror outfit’s fighters in Libya.
The MEA allegedly asked Tambe, who is wanted in a case registered by the Maharashtra anti-terrorism squad (ATS) under the anti–terror unlawful activities prevention act (UAPA) last December, to return to India and face the probe.
Sources from the ATS said that MEA officials spoke to Tambe on the telephone on “encrypted channels”. “We traced Tabrez through sources and later made MEA officers talk to him two weeks ago on encrypted channels,” said an ATS source.
After contacting Tambe, the ATS shared the contact details with the MEA. Sources from the MEA were tight-lipped about the exact details of the encrypted conversations with Tambe as the process is still underway. The MEA has begun approaching the various power centres in Libya to facilitate Tambe’s return. He is allegedly under the custody of Libyan authorities.
Tambe, a resident of Mumbra, allegedly joined the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) in September 2016. He worked as a cargo handler and had left his home in September on the pretext of getting work in Egypt. His family came to know about his IS connection when he contacted his brother, Saud in December 2016. He told him that he was arrested in Libya. Tambe went Libya to join the ISIS with his friend Ali. Despite repeated attempts, Saud was unavailable for comment. Sources from the MEA confirmed that senior officials had spoken to Tambe 15 days ago. “Efforts will be taken to bring Tabrez back to India. Although Ali is still untraceable, it is still unclear where he has gone,” the source said.
The Centre had tried to connect with each of the three Libyan governments and also contacted the three main militias in Libya to trace Tambe.