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Last Updated: Friday, 8 October, 2004, 15:37 GMT 16:37 UK
Cat Stevens seeks to clear name
Yusuf Islam (Cat Stevens)
The singer was barred entry to the US last month
Yusuf Islam, the British singer formerly known as Cat Stevens, has conceded some of his charity donations could have ended up in the wrong hands.

The performer was recently barred entry to the US on "security grounds", with accusations he helped fund terrorism.

He told CNN's Larry King Live he did not support terrorism but charity money could unwittingly go to terror groups.

He said he was not seeking a "big apology" from the US - but added he did want to have his name cleared.

"What happens sometimes - [is that] even the Red Cross, Unicef, the World Bank, must have been party to something illicit, but it never knew about it," he told Larry King.

"It's impossible for certain things, I suppose, not to happen, but when you're in the business of giving charity you can't let that be a hindrance to making sure that the people who do need it get it."

The singer was thrown out of the US after his flight from London was diverted from Washington to Maine. He had been planning to visit the country to open up a branch of his Small Kindness charity in Los Angeles.

I'm not necessarily looking for a big apology. I just want to have the freedom of movement and to clear my name, that's all
Yusuf Islam
He was escorted from the plane by the FBI and held overnight before he was deported back to the UK.

Clarification

The 56-year-old said he was well treated but only found out his name was on a "no-fly list" when he switched on the television to hear the news in the hotel room he was put up in.

He believes it was down to a spelling error on the part of the FBI because when he was questioned they kept asking him how his name was spelt.

But he has yet to receive any clarification of the situation and his lawyers are looking into it.

"I'm not necessarily looking for a big apology. I just want to have the freedom of movement and to clear my name, that's all," he said.

As a singer Cat Stevens had a string of hits in the 1960s and 1970s, including Moon Shadow, Wild World and Morning Has Broken.

He became interested in rock music in his teens while attending Hammersmith College in London and began performing in 1965 under the name Steve Adams.




SEE ALSO:
Cat Stevens case 'under review'
30 Sep 04  |  Entertainment
Cat Stevens to take legal action
24 Sep 04  |  London
Cat Stevens refused entry to US
22 Sep 04  |  Americas
From Cat Stevens to Yusuf Islam
22 Sep 04  |  Entertainment


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