|Confusion persists over Sheikh extradition
|From Absar Alam and Umar
ISLAMABAD – Conflicting reports over the extradition of
Khalid Sheikh Mohammad have confounded the confusion as sources say
the top al-Qaeda leader was flown out of Pakistan Monday in US
custody while Interior Ministry claims he was till being
interrogated by Pakistani agencies.
A top US intelligence
official was in Islamabad late last week to confirm whether or not
the arrested person was Khalid Sheikh Mohammad, the alleged
mastermind of September 11 attacks.
investigations are being carried out by the CIA and not the FBI in
this case. “The interior minister is right when he says that no FBI
agent was involved in this case because it is the CIA that is
investigating this case,” said a senior source.
According to US
media reports CIA has set up an interrogation cell at Bagram air
base in Afghanistan and most of the arrested alleged al-Qaeda
members from Pakistan and Afghanistan are taken to that base for
Earlier the government had been denying the
extradition of Dr Amir Aziz arrested from Lahore last year, however,
family sources later claimed that he was flown out of Pakistan and
interrogated in Afghanistan for a few days before being brought
Reiterating the government position on the arrest of Khalid
Sheikh the Interior Minister Makhdoom Faisal Saleh Hayat Monday said
the alleged al-Qaeda operative will not be extradited until
investigations are completed against him.
He denied the
reports that government had extradited the arrested persons to the
Responding to a question, the minister said the extradition
decision about the two foreign nationals, Khalid Sheikh Mohammad is
a Kuwaiti national, would be taken once the investigation process is
But, he added, the Pakistani national, Abdul Qudoos, who is
also member of the Jamat-i-Islami, would not be handed over to any
other country and would be tried in Pakistani courts if found guilty
of abetting terrorists.
The minister said the third alleged
al-Qaeda operative belongs to Somalia, however, he did not mention
To a question, Faisal said there was credible proof of
the involvement of these alleged terror operatives in terrorist
activities perpetrated on behalf of the al-Qaeda.
He said the
operation against suspected al-Qaeda operatives in Rawalpindi was
conducted purely by state agencies without any assistance by
“Not a single FBI official was involved in the operation,”
the minister told journalists after the inauguration ceremony of
Model Police Station Kohsar here on Monday.
Pakistan is a
sovereign country and it would not let another country’s officials
to engage in the search of suspected persons within its territory
even if they are wanted by them, he further observed.
the state agencies are well-equipped and sophisticated enough to
conduct such sensitive operations so there was no need of the US
agencies to assist them in these operations.
The minister firmly
reiterated the Pakistan is a civilized country and it would not let
its soil be used for terrorist activities.