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Thursday, September 17, 1998 Published at 23:47 GMT 00:47 UK


World: Americas

Third suspect charged over embassy bomb



The US authorities have charged a third man with killing 12 Americans in the embassy bombing in Kenya last month, in which nearly 250 people died.

However, the man, Haroun Fazil, has not been arrested and the US is offering a $2m reward for his capture. He is originally from the Comoros Islands off east Africa.

Mr Fazil allegedly helped plan the Nairobi attack and rented a villa where the bomb was built.

According to a federal complaint, he received paramilitary training to use explosives in Afghanistan.

Mr Fazil is said to have taken part in the Kenyan cell of al-Qaida, an international militant group allegedly headed by Islamic militant Osama bin Laden.


[ image: Osama bin Laden: accused of masterminding attacks]
Osama bin Laden: accused of masterminding attacks
In a complaint filed last month in a US district court, the government tried to show that Osama bin Laden directed the twin attacks on the embassies in Nairobi and Tanzania as part of an ongoing, anti-American terrorism campaign.

The complaint said al-Qaida sought to change US foreign policy by killing US civilians and military personnel worldwide.

Mr Fazil rented the Nairobi villa from May to August, when a co-conspirator also moved in, according to the complaint.

The unidentified co-conspirator told authorities he believed the bomb used in the Kenyan capital was built at the villa.

Charges could carry death sentence

Mr Fazil is also accused of carrying out surveillance operations on the Nairobi embassy in the days before the attack on 7 August.


[ image: US ambassador Prudence Bushnell was nearly a victim]
US ambassador Prudence Bushnell was nearly a victim
Another 11 people were killed in a bomb attack on the US embassy in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.

Mr Fazil also met with other members of the Kenyan cell of al-Qaida at the Hilltop Hotel in Nairobi, prosecutors say.

On the day of the bombing, he allegedly drove a white pick-up truck to the US embassy, which was followed by the vehicle carrying the bomb, the complaint said.

Mr Fazil is charged with murder, conspiring to commit murder and conspiring to use a weapon of mass destruction.

The charges could carry the death sentence on conviction.

The complaint said he hired two people to clean the villa after the attack.

The home was later searched by FBI agents, who found a grey powder that is being tested for explosive residue.

US Attorney Mary Jo White said: "As we have made clear in the past, there is no safe haven for terrorists.

"Every conceivable effort will be made to hold accountable all of those involved in murdering the more than 250 civilians in Africa."

Two other bombing suspects were charged last month and are being held in New York.





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