Man charged with trying to kill Musharraf

2012-02-15 10:00
Miami - US prosecutors in the Guantanamo war crimes tribunals filed charges on Tuesday against a Pakistani man who grew up outside Baltimore, alleging he plotted with al-Qaeda to attack US targets and assassinate former Pakistani president Pervez Musharraf.

The charges against defendant Majid Khan allege that in 2002, he donned an explosives vest and sat in a mosque in Karachi, Pakistan, where Musharraf was expected.

He planned to blow himself up and kill Musharraf, but the plot was foiled when the president failed to show up, the charges said.

Prosecutors allege Khan, aged 31, was an al-Qaeda operative who reported directly to Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, the self-described mastermind of the September 11 attacks.

Khan is accused of plotting with Mohammed, better known as KSM, to blow up underground gasoline storage tanks in the United States - attacks that were apparently not carried out.

And Khan is accused of conspiring with al-Qaeda operatives in Indonesia to bomb bars, cafes and nightclubs frequented by Westerners.

Maximum penalty

The charges, filed at the Pentagon, allege Khan delivered money used to fund a 2003 attack in which a suicide bomber drove a truck full of explosives into the JW Marriott Hotel in Jakarta. The explosion killed 11 people and injured scores.

Khan was charged with conspiring with al-Qaeda, murder and attempted murder in violation of the laws of war, providing material support for terrorism and spying on US and Pakistani targets. He would face a maximum penalty of life in prison if convicted.

Khan, a Pakistani with legal US residence, moved with his family to the Baltimore area in 1996 and graduated from high school there three years later.

He worked for a while at his family's gas station before traveling to Pakistan in 2002 to attend a series of family weddings and look for a wife. While there, an associate introduced him to KSM and he began to work with al-Qaeda, investigators said.

Khan was captured in Pakistan in March 2003 and held in secret CIA custody for three years before being transferred in 2006 to the detention center at the Guantanamo Bay US naval base in Cuba.

Assistance from a neuroscientist

He is currently held in a top-security prison at the base for "high-value" prisoners.

Prosecutors submitted the charges to a retired Navy admiral overseeing the Guantanamo trials, who must approve them before a tribunal is convened to hear the case.

Khan also received assistance from a US-trained neuroscientist, Aafia Siddiqui, who opened a post office box for him and helped him obtain travel documents, military documents indicate.

Siddiqui is serving an 86-year prison sentence for her conviction in New York on charges of grabbing a gun and trying to kill US interrogators who were questioning her at a police station in Afghanistan in 2008.

Read more on:    al-qaeda  |  pervez musharraf  |  pakistan  |  us  |  security

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
1 comment
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.