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Satellite phone recovered from CIA’s doctor in Pakistani prison

IRNA - Islamic Republic News Agency

Islamabad, Oct 15,IRNA -- Pakistani authorities Sunday recovered a satellite phone from the prison cell of a doctor, who has been jailed for helping the US intelligence to trace Osama bin Laden.

Dr. Shakil Afridi was accused of organizing a fake vaccination campaign to get DNA samples of the children of the slain al-Qaeda chief in the Pakistani town of Abbotabad, where Osama was killed on May 2 last year.

The authorities arrested four police commandos on guard at Dr Afridi’s cell in central prison in the northwestern city of Peshawar, official sources said.

After interrogating, one of the arrested guards, confessed that he had provided satellite phone to Dr Shakeel Afridi.

Last month the American Fox TV reported that one of its correspondents has interviewed Dr Afridi, who claimed that Pakistan’s intelligence agency, ISI, considers the CIA its biggest enemy.

The sources said that Dr Shakeel Afrid had made more than 68 calls from the satellite phone set and most of these calls were long-distanced calls, but the authorities are assessing the satellite phone data to ascertain the country location.

A court in Khyber tribal region handed down jail term to Dr. Afridi in May this year for helping a foreign intelligence agency.

The authorities had installed special equipment around Central Jail Peshawar to check Dr Afridi’s activities after the alleged interview and had traced some calls from his jail cell, following which the authorities conducted investigation with the four policemen.

One of the policemen, the sources said, admitted of his involvement in providing Dr Afridi the satellite phone.

The sources said that it’s likely that the interview might have been conducted through the satellite phone but the authorities are assessing the facts.

While punished in Pakistan for violating the state law, Dr. Afridi was considered as a hero in the US with some congressmen even proposing to present him with the highest American award.

Senior US officials angrily reacted to the punishment of the Pakistani surgeon and described his sentence as unjustified, arguing that he had helped the CIA to hunt down the world's most wanted man, who had been accused of 'killing' thousands of Americans.

Islamic Republic News Agency/IRNA NewsCode: 80370556

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