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Sixty foreigners linked to al Qaeda held in Yemen

The foreigners were arrested for having links with al Qaeda.

Updated: Jun 10, 2010, 09:19 AM IST

Sana’a: Sixty foreigners, including three US citizens, were arrested in Yemen for having links with al Qaeda, a top intelligence official has said.

The Yemeni authorities released last week an Australian woman, two Malaysian students and a Bangladeshi woman, who were held along with 56 others for having links with the Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), the official told Xinhua news agency.

Of the 56 who are still in custody, "a French student and three Americans have been confirmed by Yemeni security agencies of having links with al Qaeda group in Yemen", the official said on condition of anonymity.

He said the three Americans also include Sharif Mobley, the New Jersey man who worked at the US nuclear power plants and was arrested earlier this year.

"Some of the detained foreigners were arrested due to suspicious activities similar to the Nigerian student Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, who was accused of trying to blow up a Detroit-bound jet on Christmas Day at the behest of Yemeni al Qaeda wing," he said.