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Pak releases AQ Khan's aide

The official was detained two years ago on charges of helping former top scientist in transferring N-technology to foreign countries.

india Updated: Apr 30, 2006 22:27 IST

Pakistan has released an official who had been detained two years ago on charges of helping disgraced former top scientist AQ Khan in transferring nuclear technology to foreign countries.

Mohammed Farooq's son Asim confirmed that his father had been released and was in good health, but did not provide details.

Farooq was reportedly released three days ago but there has been no official word on his release.

A close aide of Khan, Farooq was among 13 officials of the Karachi Research Laboratories(KRL) detained and questioned on nuclear proliferation.

With the exception of Khan who is still under house arrest, the rest have been released, the Daily Times said on Sunday in a report.

Farooq's house was heavily guarded and no outsider was being allowed to meet him, it said adding, "His telephones are bugged".

Farooq, KRL's former Director for general procurement, was arrested on November 23, 2003.

The KRL officials suspected of nuclear proliferation were arrested under the Security Act of 1952, which authorises the government to keep extending detention by three months.

Relatives of the detained scientists and other KRL officials had approached the Supreme Court demanding their release.

Farooq is the recipient of the Hilal-e-Imtiaz and Sitara-e-Imtiaz awards, which were given after Pakistan conducted its first successful nuclear test in 1998.