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Saturday, Sep 21, 2019

Detained Pak national says he was framed

A Pakistani man being investigated in a terror probe after being detained at the US Embassy said yesterday that he thinks it all must be a mistake.

world Updated: Jun 10, 2010 11:08 IST


A Pakistani man being investigated in a terror probe after being detained at the US Embassy said on Wednesday that he thinks it all must be a mistake.

"Everything is so weird. I am still trying to think what happened," Mohammed Saif Ur Rehman Khan said in an interview in his public defender's office.

Khan, 28, repeated his denials that he has anything to do with terrorism, and said he can't figure out why Chilean police say they found traces of tetryl, a chemical used to boost the power of explosives, in his bag, on his cell phone and on clothing in his apartment.

Khan had been called to the US Embassy to be told his visa was revoked because of information received by the US government, the State Department has said.

But Khan said they never told him his visa was revoked, and he claimed a bomb sniffing dog was so uninterested in his bag that it appeared to fall asleep.

Perhaps it's a case of mistaken identity or that he's being framed for reasons he doesn't understand, Khan said. Khan has been freed three times by judges who ruled that the evidence is insufficient to justify holding him in Chile's maximum-security prison for terror suspects.

Prosecutors and the Interior Ministry asked judge Carolina Araya to apply Chile's tough anti-terror law - a legacy of the dictatorship of Gen. Augusto Pinochet that allows for long detentions without court orders, tougher sentences and unidentified witnesses.

But the judge has so far refused to order Khan held on any charge tougher than an alleged violation of Chile's explosives control law, and her order that he be free pending the investigation has been upheld twice.

Asked if he still wants the United States to be safe and secure, Khan said: "Obviously. Not just for my brother, but my cousin and my friends, so many people" who live there.

Asked about a photo leaked by Chilean authorities that shows Khan holding what appears to be an air rifle in Pakistan, Khan said they didn't show others from the same picnic that make it clear it was a casual party and nothing like a terror training effort.

First Published: Jun 10, 2010 08:32 IST