Alqaeda singapore plot
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U.S. holds alleged al-Qaeda plotter
WASHINGTON (APOnline) — The U.S. military has in custody a man who law enforcement officials believe directed an al-Qaeda plot to destroy the American Embassy in Singapore, a senior Bush administration official said Friday night. The suspect is being detained at a secret location in the northeastern United States, the official said, speaking on condition of anonymity.
Mohammed Mansour Jabarah, a 20-year-old Canadian man, has admitted to directing the al-Qaeda plot to blow up government buildings in Singapore and making a video of the targets, NBC News reported Friday night.
The government of Singapore announced in January it had stopped a plot by terrorists linked to al-Qaeda to blow up Western embassies, U.S. Navy vessels, a shuttle bus carrying American soldiers and the offices of U.S. companies.
One of the ringleaders of the Singapore embassy-bombing plot is a man code-named "Sammy," Singaporean authorities have said. The 20-year-old of Kuwaiti origin had been traveling under a Canadian passport bearing the name "Jabarah Mohammed Mansour," according to Singapore's Ministry of Home Affairs.
Singapore said it arrested six suspects by the time an incriminating videotape and handwritten notes were found in the rubble of an al-Qaeda leader's home in Afghanistan. By the time Singapore received the tape and notes on Dec. 28, 13 suspects were in custody. Jabarah, though, escaped before the others were captured and was later arrested in Oman, NBC News said.
Government officials say the capture of Jabarah is a significant breakthrough in the effort to disrupt future al-Qaeda plots. Authorities believe Jabarah has detailed information on al-Qaeda operations in different parts of the world and is aware of operatives on all levels of the terrorist group.
Jabarah is not considered a senior member of al-Qaeda but does have significant "operational authority," said the official.
Law enforcement officials say Jabarah now faces terrorism charges.
NBC reported that Jabarah is cooperating by providing new information about al-Qaeda's operations, including terrorist plans drawn up since Sept. 11.
He has agreed to testify in future trials of suspected al-Qaeda members, according to NBC.
The United States has argued that it has the ability to hold suspects of terrorism indefinitely and in secret. The U.S. military can hold detainees for the duration of the war, the Bush administration contends, and at any time a military tribunal can try suspects.
The other leader of the Singapore bombing plot, a 31-year-old code-named "Mike," was using a Philippines passport under the name of "Alih Randy," according to Singaporean authorities. The man was arrested in the Philippines in January 2002 and identified as Fathur Rohman Al-Ghozi, an Indonesian.
Al-Ghozi pleaded guilty in April to explosives possession after leading Philippine police earlier this year to a ton of TNT that officials say was to be used for terrorist attacks in Singapore. Al-Ghozi also told police he helped plan a series of almost simultaneous bombings that killed 22 people in Manila in 2000.
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US Holds Al Qaeda Suspect in Singapore Plot -Report
Fri Jul 26,10:54 PM ET
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. officials are interrogating a suspected al Qaeda operative who grew up in Ontario. The man, Mohammed Mansour Jabarah, says he directed a foiled plot to blow up the American embassy in Singapore, NBC Nightly News said on Friday.
He was arrested earlier this year in Oman, but is now being held at a military base in the northeastern United States, NBC said.
Jabarah, 20, is cooperating and providing new information about al Qaeda's operations, including attack plans drawn up since the Sept. 11 attacks on Washington and New York, the report said.
Osama bin Laden ( news - web sites)'s Islamic al Qaeda network is believed to be responsible for the attacks, in which more than 3,000 people died, as well as a number of attacks on U.S. forces.
NBC said Jabarah faces terrorism charges, but has agreed to testify in future trials of suspected al Qaeda members.
"At the request of U.S. officials, who cite concerns for Jabarah's safety, NBC News has agreed to withhold the exact military installation where he's being held," the network's correspondent Pete Williams said.
Neither the Justice Department ( news - web sites) nor the FBI ( news - web sites) would comment on the report.
NBC said U.S. and Singapore authorities last December exposed the plot to blow up the U.S. and Israeli embassies in Singapore, as well as the offices of the British and Australian governments and commercial buildings housing American companies there.
The authorities rounded up other members of the plot, but Jabarah escaped at that time, the report said. Jabarah had been known to the other group members only as "Sammy," it said.
Jabarah had ordered the co-plotters to buy 17 tons of ammonium nitrate fertilizer for truck bombs, the report said.