Minister: Pakistan arrests al Qaeda no. 3
Pakistani security forces have detained a senior al-Qaeda suspect Abu Faraj al-Libbi, who was also wanted for two suicide attacks on President General Pervez Musharraf, Information Minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmed said on Wednesday.
"There is no harm to confirm that Abu Faraj al-Libbi has been arrested," the official told a private television channel.
Al Libbi is reportedly a Libyan citizen who has worked closely with Osama Bin Laden and is believed to have taken over the No. 3 spot in the network's hierarchy following the capture of Khalid Sheik Mohammed, in March 2003.
As Khalid's aide, Abu Faraj has played a role in organizing the 9/11 attacks, according to reports.
During 2004, Pakistani officials issued a poster of the country's "most wanted terrorists," offering rewards of 20 million rupees (about US$333,000) for the capture of Abu Faraj. All in the poster but Abu Faraj were Pakistani citizens.
He did not disclose when and where Abu Faraj was arrested but intelligence sources say Abu Faraj was arrested in Pakistan along with five other al-Qaeda suspects earlier this month, after a gun battle in Waziristan, North-West Frontier Province.
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