Pakistani says false alarm led to Chile detention

A Pakistani detained in Chile said the positive test for explosive traces he registered at the US Embassy was likely a false alarm and denied any wrongdoing.

Santiago: A Pakistani detained in
Chile said the positive test for explosive traces he
registered at the US Embassy was likely a false alarm and
denied any wrongdoing. He said he holds no ill will toward
America.

Mohammad Saif Ur Rehman Khan was detained May 10 after
embassy equipment detected traces of explosives on his cell
phone and papers. Traces of the same substance were later
found on items in his apartment and Chilean authorities
charged him with possessing explosives.

The 28-year-old read a statement in English to reporters
outside the public defenders office yesterday, professing his
innocence and calling the allegations against him "baseless
and false." He said the case appeared "to have stemmed from a
false alarm."

Soon after his arrest, Khan told local media he thought
his detention was an attempt to cover up shame for America`s
actions in Iraq and Pakistan.

But yesterday he was less critical of the United States.

"I have friends and family in the United States of
America and more than anyone I want America to be safe and
secure," he said. "I have been to the US and I greatly admire
the American values of truth, justice and freedom."

In yesterday`s statement, Khan repeated his claim that he
was in Chile to learn Spanish and study the tourism industry.

Khan has been released from detention but is not allowed
to leave Chile`s capital pending the investigation. He is
staying at a student residence in Santiago.

PTI

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