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Last Updated: Wednesday, 3 August 2005, 12:28 GMT 13:28 UK
Zambia to deport terror suspect
Central prison, Lusaka
Mr Aswat is being held at Lusaka's central prison
A Briton held in Zambia on suspicion of terrorism will be deported to the UK, the country's president has said.

Haroon Rashid Aswat, 30, of West Yorkshire, is suspected by US officials of involvement in a plot to set up an al-Qaeda training camp in Oregon.

BBC correspondents say he will be questioned by UK police on his return but there is no evidence to link him to the 7 July London bombings.

Mr Aswat's family fear he could end up in US detention at Guantanamo Bay.

Zambian President Levy Mwanawasa told a news conference: "We have discussed with the governments of the US and Britain and we have finally agreed that Mr Aswat must be deported to Britain because that is his country."

Consular access

At the weekend, Mr Aswat's family called on the UK Government to intervene in his case.

Map of Zambia

They were upset by newspaper reports claiming British officials were discussing Mr Aswat's extradition with the US Government.

"Our government and the FCO are dilly-dallying and do not have the decency to confirm Haroon's detention," they said in a statement.

The Foreign Office said on Wednesday it had obtained an agreement from the Zambian authorities to gain consular access to a British national in custody.


Several UK newspapers have linked him to the 7 July London bombings, but BBC security correspondent Gordon Corera said the police have no evidence to link him to the attack.

Our correspondent said the UK police may well question him over other investigations.

He added British authorities had been "reticent" about handing him over to the US because of the possibility of him ending up at Guantanamo Bay.

Mr Aswat is being held in the central prison in Zambia's capital, Lusaka.

The Zambian authorities said he was arrested on 20 July, after having entered the country on 6 July.

Oregon plot

It is believed US authorities requested his detention because they want to question him about a 1999 plot to set up an al-Qaeda training camp in Bly, Oregon.

James Ujaama, 38, a Muslim convert from Seattle who had lived in Britain, pleaded guilty to involvement in the plot in April 2003.

He faced up to 25 years in prison but received a two-year sentence after co-operating with federal investigations.

Ujaama was questioned about Mr Aswat, who was referred to in the 2002 indictment of Ujaama by a federal grand jury in Seattle.

See police station where Haroon Rashid Aswat is held

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