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Pakistani At Chile’s US Embassy Detained

From an outraged Agence France-Pressee (AFP):

Chile extends detention of Pakistani in terror scare

Wed May 12, 2010

SANTIAGO (AFP) – Chilean authorities have extended the detention of a Pakistani man found with traces of explosives as he visited the US embassy to discuss a revoked visa.

"I am innocent and I do not know why this is happening. I think it is the fault of the United States, where I wanted to go for a month. That’s why I went to the embassy," the man, who police identified as Mauhannas Saif Ur Rehnab Khan, told reporters.

Rehnab, 28, denied any terror ties. "I have no idea what is happening here, but I imagine it has to do with what’s going on in Iraq and Afghanistan," he said.

"I don’t know anything about bombs. I am a man who studies and works and I have nothing to do with that stuff," he said.

Rehnab made the remarks to AFP as he was transferred in a police van to a hospital for a medical checkup ordered by Judge Ely Rothfield.

Under anti-terror laws the suspect can be detained until Saturday, court sources said.

Experts found traces of a TNT explosive derivative on the young suspect’s hands, cell phone, bag and documentation after he went through a security checkpoint on Monday, prompting embassy staff to notify police.

Rehnab insisted he did not know where the traces came from, and said that he was at the embassy only to renew his visa.

But the State Department said in Washington that the embassy called Rehnab in after revoking his US visa. It did not say why the visa had been revoked.

State Department spokesman Philip Crowley said Rehnab had been called in "to clarify the information that we have on this individual.

"And as he came into the embassy, our explosive detectors went off." …

The US ambassador to Chile, Paul Simons, said the affair was in the hands of Chilean lawyers, speaking in Spanish on local radio…

Chilean prosecutor Mario Schilling told AFP that a probe was under way after police interrogated Rehnam and raided his home.

The suspect arrived in Chile some three months ago on a valid visa and sought work at a hotel in the capital and to practice his Spanish.

A neighbor told local daily La Tercera that Rehnab had planned to travel to the United States to work in the hotel business

The spokesman said that Rehnab was introverted and did not mix with the rest of the congregation at the Chilean capital’s only mosque

The affair is “in the hands of Chilean lawyers”? We can hear the sound of the ACLU’s planes jetting to Chile we speak.

The authorities are detaining this introverted young Muslim male from Pakistan simply because they found traces of TNT on his hands, cell phone, bag and documentation — when was only trying to renew his revoked visa to the United States?

That sure sounds like an open and shut case of ‘profiling’ to me.

Mr. Rehnab may have already won $10 million.

This article was posted by Steve on Wednesday, May 12th, 2010. Comments are currently closed.

4 Responses to “Pakistani At Chile’s US Embassy Detained”

  1. NoNeoCommies says:

    He needs to get refugee status.
    The Left will support bringing him here to save him from the persecution of the American Government.
    After all, once you are here we can hardly do anything to you.

  2. Right of the People says:

    He probably got an internship with La Raza to teach bomb making 101 and he wanted to brush up on this Spanish before the gig started.

  3. MinnesotaRush says:

    Aren’t we being a little too harsh .. rushing to judgement?

    I mean, after all, which one of us hasn’t set off the ‘explosive alarms’ from time to time when we go places?

    Good grief.

    (rolling eyes)

  4. confucius says:

    Here’s another version of the story from AP:

    Chilean police detain Pakistani in US Embassy

    By Federico Quilodran
    May 11, 2010

    SANTIAGO, Chile – Traces of explosives were found on a Pakistani man who was summoned to the U.S. Embassy because his U.S. visa had been revoked, authorities said Tuesday, and a Chilean judge ordered him held in a high-security prison under anti-terrorism laws.

    Mohammed Saif-ur-Rehman Khan, 28, was detained Monday after the embassy’s detectors were set off by traces of bomb-making material, said Mario Schilling, a Chilean prosecutor’s spokesman. …

    A senior State Department official in Washington said U.S. authorities had received information about Khan that led them to revoke his visa and he was asked to visit the embassy in Santiago so diplomats could inform him of the revocation, as required by U.S. law.

    Simon, the U.S. ambassador, told The Associated Press the embassy called Chile’s government and police after “security procedures detected some traces of explosives during the interview.” He said it didn’t appear the embassy itself was targeted.

    According to the Chilean newspaper La Segunda, the substance detected was Tetryl, a compound used to increase the explosive power of TNT. …

    El Mercurio reported that Khan was in Chile legally to study tourism and had a job at a hotel.


    The AP article states that Khan was in Chile to study tourism, already had a job in the hotel business and already had a U.S. visa. It also states that Khan went to the embassy because his U.S. visa was now revoked and routine procedure required the embassy to make contact.

    Clearly, the AP doesn’t love the State Department like the AFP.

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