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Manila detains Saudi Airlines pilot


The Philippine National Police (PNP) have detained a Saudi Airlines pilot on suspicion that he is a brother of Adnan Bukhari, one of the men who is thought to have been involved in the terrorist attacks on the U.S.

Saudi pilot Mohammed Oman Bukhari was arrested because his name was hastily inserted on a crew manifest of a Saudi Airlines flight bound for Riyadh, airport officials said. Bukhari arrived in Manila on Friday from Riyadh.

Bukhari substituted for Captain Arya Mani who was suddenly offloaded. But Bukhari did not bother to change the general information plan and merely crossed out Mani's name, Immigration agents said.

The arrest became official after the Bureau of Immigration was told that Bukhari might be the brother of one of the alleged hijackers. Bukhari said he has a brother and a sister, but they are both in Saudi Arabia.

Meanwhile, the Philippine National Police said they had released three Omani nationals who were accosted for taking a video tape of the U.S. Embassy. One of them was eventually found to have a name similar to one of the hijackers that boarded the plane that destroyed the World Trade Centre.

The three Omani nationals were identified as Khalid Abdullah Al Shihi, 26, Ahmed Darwish Mohammad Al Shihi, 29, and Bader Darwish Mohammed Al Shihi, 29.

Police accosted them when they were taking a video tape of the U.S. Embassy on Manila's Roxas Boulevard on September 8, following a complaint that was initiated by the U.S. Embassy. Charges were not filed since the police confiscated the film of the video tapes from the Omani nationals, police said.

On September 12, the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) asked the police for another investigation because one of the Omani nationals appeared in the flight manifest of one of the hijacked planes.

Following the FBI's request, the police found the hotel room where the three stayed and found traced of TNT chemicals.

President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo initially gave a sketchy outline of the story in Tokyo. Police Chief Leandro Mendoza and Presidential Spokesperson Rigoberto Tiglao gave more details in Manila.

Source: GulfNews©


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