[an error occurred while processing this directive]
BBC News
watch One-Minute World News
Last Updated: Saturday, 30 July 2005, 18:06 GMT 19:06 UK
Family's fears for terror suspect
Guantanamo inmate and guards
Mr Aswat's family fear he will be sent to Guantanamo Bay in Cuba.
The family of a British terror suspect reportedly being held in Zambia have called on the government to intervene in his case amid fears for his future.

Haroon Rashid Aswat, 30, from West Yorkshire, has reportedly been held in the capital Lusaka over allegations he helped plan a terror camp in America.

The Foreign Office says it is "trying to gain consular access" to a Briton reported to be in custody in Zambia.

It is thought Mr Aswat could be sent to the US detention camp Guantanamo Bay.

'Extremely distressed'

The Foreign Office says it cannot confirm Mr Aswat is being held as it has not been granted access.

It is thought he was detained over plans to establish a terrorist training camp in Oregon in 1999.

In a statement, his family said: "We are extremely concerned, distressed and disappointed by the attitude of the British government and the FCO in not providing consular access to Haroon.

His arrest follows ongoing security investigations on the threat of terrorism to which Mr Aswat is alleged to be connected
Zambian police statement

"It is very worrying that after more than 10 days the British government is still unable to verify that the British citizen detained is actually Haroon.

"Press reports are reporting unnamed British officials in discussions with the US government over extradition of Haroon yet our government and the FCO are dilly-dallying and do not have the decency to confirm Haroon's detention."

Human rights lawyer Gareth Peirce said she feared the US was trying to get him extradited.

'Security investigations'

She said: "In the light of the way the Americans have treated UK citizens held in custody in recent years the family is fearful their son may be extradited to the US to face torture.

"We are only too familiar with other cases where British citizens and those with granted refugee protection by the British have been arrested in and removed from Zambia, Gambia and Pakistan to Guantanamo Bay."

Zambian police have told the AFP news agency Mr Aswat was arrested on July 20 in Lusaka having entered the country on July 6.

A statement, signed by inspector general Ephraim Maateyo, said: "His arrest follows ongoing security investigations on the threat of terrorism to which Mr Aswat is alleged to be connected.

"The British authorities were duly informed of the arrest."


SEE ALSO:



PRODUCTS AND SERVICES

News Front Page | Africa | Americas | Asia-Pacific | Europe | Middle East | South Asia
UK | Business | Entertainment | Science/Nature | Technology | Health
Have Your Say | In Pictures | Week at a Glance | Country Profiles | In Depth | Programmes
Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific