Syed Saleem Shahzad – Asia Times July 23, 2005
The case of one Hasib Hussain raises questions. The 16-year-old Briton of Pakistani origin was pinpointed as one of the four London bombers, and according to Pakistani immigration officials he visited Pakistan last July via Saudi Arabia.
Now, Hasib Hussain and his father have been interviewed at their High Wycombe home in England by Pakistani TV station ARY. "I first saw my photograph on Channel 4 [news] and I was terrified," the boy told ARY. "I didn't want people looking at me saying, hey, you are supposed to be dead," he told ARY. "Or someone saying that there goes the London bomber." His father told ARY that the family had indeed visited Karachi via Saudi Arabia. He appealed for British and Pakistani authorities to clear up the confusion.
Yahya Mujahid, a spokesperson of Jamaatudawa (formerly known as the Lashkar-I-Toiba), also took issue with reports that have surfaced about another of the bombers, Shahzad Tanweer.
"The whole story is built with bad intentions. Most of the allegations leveled against us are false. Even the story of Shahzad Tanweer, that he attended a madrassa at Mureedkey [headquarters of Jamaatudawa] is false. In fact, according to his uncle's statement, he attended a madrassa near Lahore. There are dozens of madrassas near Lahore and he need not necessarily have gone to Jamaatudawa. Secondly, he also spent time with Tableegi Jamaat, which is [ideologically] contrary to Jamaatudawa in all aspects. How come would he wear two hats at the same time?" asked Yahya.
"On such baseless allegations they are aiming to put us behind bars. Are we only here to be rounded up? Don't we have any human rights?" Yahya asked. "We condemned the London bombing. It was murder of civilians, which just cannot be approved," Yahya maintained.
Excerpted from Pakistan: United militants, divided leaders
Last updated 27/07/2005