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Sunday, 31 March, 2002, 08:42 GMT 09:42 UK
Pakistan swoops net 60 terror suspects

A senior Pakistani official has confirmed that about 60 people, half of them foreigners, have been detained as suspected members of militant organisations during police raids.

The raids were carried out in Faisalabad and Lahore on Thursday.

The interior ministry official, Brigadier Zafar Iqbal Cheema, said that not all their identities were known and they were being questioned.

One of those arrested is reported to resemble a senior al-Qaida figure, Abu Zubaydah.

Press reports in Pakistan and the United States said the operation was a joint one between American and Pakistani forces.

President Pervez Musharraf's spokesman, General Rashid Quereshi, is quoted as saying such reports were incorrect and misleading.

A senior US army spokesman, General Tommy Franks, said American troops were not involved but there was cooperation between what he called the assets of both governments.

From the newsroom of the BBC World Service

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