Friend and Ally Alert. By Salman Masood and Carlotta Gall for the IHT :
ISLAMABAD, Pakistan: The release after three years of imprisonment of a Pakistani man accused of aiding Al Qaeda has dismayed U.S. officials.
Muhammad Naeem Noor Khan, 28, was released without charge and turned up at his home in Karachi on Monday, his lawyer, Babar Awan, said. Khan was part of a group of people being held without charge in Pakistan and whose cases came before the Supreme Court on Monday.
Naheeda Mahboob Elahi, deputy attorney general of Pakistan, was asked about Khan’s whereabouts by the court and said he had already been released. Awan said his office later reached Khan’s family, who confirmed that he had arrived home. Awan said he had not yet spoken to his client.
Khan was arrested in Lahore International Airport in July 2004 during a joint Pakistani-British operation. Soon after his arrest, the authorities in Pakistan and the United States said they had found files on his computer that led to the raising of the terrorism alert level in the United States.
The authorities said the files included surveillance information on the World Bank and International Monetary Fund in Washington, the Citigroup Tower and New York Stock Exchange in New York and the Prudential Building in Newark, New Jersey.