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Singapore bomb plot suspect held

Jabarah had been living in this St. Catherines, Ontario, Canada, home.
Jabarah had been living in this St. Catherines, Ontario, Canada, home.  

From Justice Correspondent Kelli Arena
and Jakarta Bureau Chief Maria Ressa

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- CNN has confirmed that a suspected al Qaeda terrorist, identified as Mohamed Mansour Jabarah, is being held in the United States in relation to a foiled plot to bomb the American embassies in Jakarta and Singapore and other targets in Southeast Asia.

Jabarah, who is also known by the code name "Sammy", is being held at a military base in the northeast part of the U.S.

He is being interrogated and is providing some information, sources said.

He has been in U.S. custody for at least a month after being transferred from Oman, where sources say he was arrested about three months ago.

Sources tell CNN he admits to being a member of al Qaeda, and admits his involvement in the Singapore plot to bomb a U.S. Embassy and other targets.

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Jabarah was also allegedly involved in doing reconnaissance of possible targets in Singapore, Malaysia and the Philippines.

According to one source, Jabarah was very "hands-on" in the planning and ruled out the U.S. Embassy in the Philippines as a good target.

Intelligence documents from Southeast Asia say Jabarah was sent to the region by Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, who officials believe was one of the planners of the September 11 terrorist attacks.

Jabarah arrived in Southeast Asia September 10, 2001.

'Leading figure'

According to a source, Jabarah also knows Osama bin Laden and met with him a few months prior to leaving for Southeast Asia.

Singapore's Foreign Ministry, on its Web page, says Jabarah is a 20-year-old Kuwaiti who entered the country traveling on a Canadian passport.

The Web page goes on to describe him as "the leading figure in the plan to bomb several targets in Singapore including the U.S. and Israeli embassies."

Sources say it is not clear whether Jabarah will face terrorism charges.

One official says it is possible he could be used to testify at the trials of other suspected al Qaeda terrorists to provide information about al Qaeda operations.




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