28 July 2005
The suspected mastermind of the bomb attacks in London on July 7 hid in South Africa for several weeks before being arrested in Zambia last week. Cable News Network (CNN) reported on Thursday that the man, a British national of Pakistani or Indian descent, made about 20 calls from a South African cellphone number to two of the bombers who attacked three underground trains and a bus. The blasts killed 56 people, including the suicide attackers. Haroon Rashid Aswat, aged 30, was also being questioned about a jihad training camp he allegedly helped to establish in Oregon, United States. According to CNN, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) wanted to arrest Aswat in South Africa, but their British counterparts would not agree to this. South African National Intelligence Agency spokesperson Lorna Daniels refused to comment. However, a security source admitted that apparently Aswat had fled to South Africa and that he had been kept under surveillance here. The FBI wanted to question him about his ties with al-Qaeda. US attempts to arrest him had been made before Aswat travelled to Britain where, according to The Times website, he visited all four suicide bombers. Intelligence sources say the King's Cross, Aldgate and Liverpool Street attacks were planned during his visit. US and Zambian officials have confirmed Aswat's arrest. A spokesperson for Britain's home secretary would confirm only that a British national had been arrested and that their high commission was trying to gain access to the man. There seems to be some confusion surrounding Aswat's arrest after reports last week that he had been arrested in Pakistan because of his ties with al-Qaeda, but the CNN stood by its story that Aswat was definitely arrested in Zambia.

Don Van Natta, (2005), 'Suspected bomb mastermind caught', from The Sydney Morning Herald, 22 July [Online], Available at: www.smh.com.au [Accessed: 24 July 2013]