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Pakistan preparing to extradite Rauf to Britain (LEAD)

Islamabad, Aug 26 (IANS) Top security officials of Britain and Pakistan are negotiating the extradition of Rashid Rauf, the key suspect in the plot to blow up US-bound passenger aircraft from London, although there is no extradition treaty in place between the two countries.

Saturday, August 26, 2006 | 1:42:27 PM IST (+05:30 GMT)
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Islamabad, Aug 26 (IANS) Top security officials of Britain and Pakistan are negotiating the extradition of Rashid Rauf, the key suspect in the plot to blow up US-bound passenger aircraft from London, although there is no extradition treaty in place between the two countries.

Britain is waiting expiry of the physical remand of Rauf, whose arrest was registered in Airport police station for holding tampered traveling documents, The Nation said.

London has also sought credentials of all those who were held here on suspicion of being linked with terror plot, the paper said quoting official sources.

Foreign Office spokesperson Tasnim Aslam confirmed the possibility of shifting Rauf to Britain where he is required in the extensive probe into the London terror plot.

'Although we don't have an extradition treaty but the possibility is very much there,' Aslam said.

Rauf, brought up in Birmingham, has family ties with Jaish-e-Muhammad (JEM) founder Maulana Masood Azhar and has left his family in a recently purchased house under the care of Azhar's father in Bahawalpur, Punjab, as per media reports here.

He was born in Pakistan, but Pakistan government maintains that he is a British national. Aslam said there was no doubt about Rauf's nationality.

A tip-off from Rauf through a phone call is believed to have been the green signal for the plot that was foiled by the timely arrests in Pakistan and in London suburbs.

As per Pakistan's intelligence, the held suspects were allegedly orchestrating a plan to blow up several trans-Atlantic flights mid air with the collaboration of a Kunar-based Al Qaeda linchpin in neighbouring Afghanistan.

Copyright : Indo-Asian News Service
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