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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Pakistan denies US magazine report on al-Qaeda meet

IRNA - Islamic Republic News Agency

Islamabad, Aug 16, IRNA -- Pakistan military spokesman has denied 
remarks attributed to President General Pervez Musharraf in the 
American Time magazine`s interview that al-Qaeda members had held a 
meeting in the country`s tribal region in March this year. 
"President Musharraf, in his interview, had not said anything 
about the meeting, but had reported the arrest of an al-Qaeda suspect,
who had disclosed that a man from Britain had met him in March. The 
arrested man also disclosed that an explosive expert also met him," 
Pakistan military spokesman Major General Shaukat Sultan said. 
Time in its latest edition quoted President Musharraf telling the 
magazine that the discovery of a meeting of suspects in Pakistan in 
March had exposed what he called a second string leadership of 
"The personalities involved, the operations, the fact that a major
explosives expert came here and went back," Musharraf reportedly said,
"all this was extremely significant." 
The March 2004 summit in the semi-autonomous area of Waziristan, 
ascribed to Pakistani president by Time and expounded on by US 
officials, has become a subject of obsession for authorities in both 
"The news of the al-Qaeda meeting is aimed at creating 
sensationalism," the ISPR spokesman Sultan said. 
According to the Time, some of those at the discussions have since
been arrested in the United States and Britain, but others remain at 
The US magazine said that the meeting took place in a north 
western tribal area, Waziristan, where Pakistani forces have been 
conducting an operation a against militants. 
Pakistani troops are engaged in operation against al-Qaeda 
suspects and their local supporters in the area. 
Authorities believe that some 600 foreign suspects, who have fled 
Afghanistan, are hiding in South Waziristan. 

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