Arrested American youths wanted to contact al-Qaeda: police | world | Hindustan Times
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Arrested American youths wanted to contact al-Qaeda: police

Five American Muslims, arrested on suspicion of plotting terror attacks, were hauled up just before a scheduled meeting with al-Qaeda operatives and had been spurned by some other Pakistan-based terror groups after they showed keenness to only join 'jehad' in Afghanistan

world Updated: Dec 12, 2009 23:00 IST

Five American Muslims, arrested on suspicion of plotting terror attacks, were hauled up just before a scheduled meeting with al-Qaeda operatives and had been spurned by some other Pakistan-based terror groups after they showed keenness to only join 'jehad' in Afghanistan.

The five, who have been grilled by FBI and Pakistani intelligence, have said that they wanted to engage in militant activities and were trying to travel to Taliban heartland of Waziristan, a police official said.

"They had contacted one Safiullah, who has links with al-Qaeda and had arranged a meeting with him to go to Waziristan to seek terror training," the official said.

The five were arrested on Wednesday in Sargodha in Punjab and according to the local police chief Usman Anwar they were in contact with Jaish-e-Mohammad and Jamaat-ud-Dawah to enrol themselves but were spurned as they were more interested in going to Afghanistan to fight US forces and not to carry out terror attacks in India.

"The American youths were in contact with JeM and JuD but the latter refused to extend them any sort of help when they made it clear that they are more interested in going to Afghanistan to fight US forces," Anwar said.

While the US wants Pakistan to deport the five back for questioning and investigations, Pakistan Interior Minister Rehman Malik has said they would not be deported back unless they are cleared by Pakistani police.