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Page last updated at 00:41 GMT, Wednesday, 12 May 2010 01:41 UK

Chile holds Pakistani after US embassy explosives trace

Mohammed Saif Ur Rehman Khan in Santiago, 11/05
Mohammed Saif Ur Rehman Khan denied handling explosives

A Pakistani man has been detained under anti-terror laws in Chile after traces of explosives were found on him at the US embassy in Santiago.

Officials said Mohammed Saif Ur Rehman Khan, 28, was invited to the embassy to be told his US visa had been revoked.

Mr Khan spoke briefly to journalists to deny that he was a terrorist or that he had handled any explosives.

The arrest came days after a Pakistani-born American was charged with an attempted bombing in New York.

But US officials said they were not aware of any possible link between the two men, and US ambassador Paul Simon told Chilean radio he did not think Mr Khan had been trying to attack the embassy.

Hotel intern

Mr Khan was taken into custody while police searched his student lodgings.

Prosecutors said he had traces of explosives on his hands, mobile phone, bag and ID.

But he told reporters: "I have nothing to do with bombs. I have nothing to do with terrorists. I don't have a beard.

"They just want to cover up their shame and guilt for what they have done or are doing in Iraq and Afghanistan."

He said he was a student doing an internship in a hotel in Santiago.

Local media reported that he had been in Chile since January.

The US embassy in Santiago has been targeted before. It was sent a letter bomb in 2001, shortly after the 9/11 attacks.

The bomb was defused and a Chilean man was sentenced to 10 years in prison for the attack.



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