British MPs want answers over terror suspect killing


London : The reported killing of a British terror suspect in an American airstrike in Pakistan Saturday has prompted questions if the British intelligence was made aware of the planned attack, according to a report Sunday.

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Rashid Rauf, a Pakistani-origin man who is thought to have been involved in a 2006 plot to blow up transatlantic flights with liquid bombs, is reported by the Pakistani media to have been killed in a drone attack in the North Waziristan area.

But the British government had been unable to confirm the report till Sunday morning GMT, prompting a host of questions from leading politicians about Rauf, who is said to have attended terror camps in Pakistan and is on Britain’s ‘most wanted’ list.

The Sunday Time said senior MPs from both the ruling Labour and opposition Conservative parties plan to ask if British intelligence knew the CIA was planning the attack.

Critics of the action include Andrew Dismore, who chairs the British parliament’s human rights committee, and Patrick Mercer, a former security spokesman for the Conservative party, the paper said.

“This raises the question of how much cooperation the British intelligence agencies provided in what is ultimately the execution of a British subject. The government must explain its involvement,” Mercer said.

Rauf was said to have been on the run after mysteriously escaping his police captors – they allowed him to go to a mosque – while on his way to an extradition hearing in December last year.

Rauf’s extradition was sought by British authorities, but ex-Pakistani President Gen. Pervez Musharraf is thought to have asked for eight London-based Baloch independence campaigners in exchange.