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Thread: The Behavior of Muslims towards the USA - Part I

  1. #1
    Guest
    Law enforcement officials in the United States and Canada
    confirmed yesterday that as many as 19 individuals of Middle Eastern
    and
    Pakistani origin might have illegally entered the United States on Dec.
    24,
    not just the five who this week became the focus of an international
    manhunt led by the FBI.

    The search was triggered by information gained during the breakup of a
    sophisticated document-forging ring in Ontario, according to law
    enforcement officials. The forgers appear to have provided the fake
    passports, false names, and photographs under which the individuals may
    have infiltrated the United States by way of Canada, possibly on a
    terror
    mission, although the FBI stressed that it does not know their true
    identities or their reasons for coming to the United States.

    The FBI and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police are trying to determine
    whether the alleged passport forgers - identified by Canadian media
    reports
    as Michael John Hamdani and Aftab Elahi of Brampton, Ontario - might be
    linked to a broad conspiracy or are simply suspects in a criminal
    enterprise with no agenda other than illicit profit. Hamdani is wanted
    by
    US authorities on forgery charges believed related to falsified travel
    documents, according to Canadian police.

    Meanwhile, an alert sent by the US Immigration and Naturalization
    Service
    to all US-Canadian points of entry on Dec. 27 contained 19 names,
    including
    the five men of Middle Eastern or Pakistani origin identified by the
    FBI,
    according to law enforcement officials with direct knowledge of the
    investigation. Officials are seeking to determine whether all 19
    surreptitiously crossed the border and whether all or some are
    operatives
    for Al Qaeda or affiliated terror groups.

    All of the names apparently were provided to US officials some weeks
    after
    Canadian police raided a house in suburban Toronto and seized
    counterfeit
    passports, fake driver's licenses, and stacks of passport photos,
    charging
    Hamdani and Elahi with fraud.

    Canada late yesterday dropped fraud charges against Hamdani in exchange
    for
    his agreement to surrender to American authorities in New York to face
    forgery charges and assist the FBI in its search for the illegal
    immigrants
    who may be carrying fake documents he provided.

    An FBI official confirmed last night that the agency has expanded its
    search from the original five to an unspecified number of other
    foreign-born individuals, believed to be Arabs or Pakistanis. They
    might
    have illegally entered the United States from Canada on or shortly
    before
    Dec. 24, carrying false passports and other forged documentation,
    including
    European driver's licenses.

    Another American law enforcement official, speaking on condition of
    anonymity, said that investigators also are probing the possibility
    that
    some of the individuals sneaked into the United States by way of the
    Akwesasne Mohawk Reserve, which straddles the borders of Ontario,
    Quebec,
    and New York State.

    For years, the reserve has been a notorious smuggling route, serving as
    a
    conduit for illegal immigrants bound for the United States and for
    contraband goods, mainly cigarettes and alcohol, headed for Canada to
    avoid
    heavy US taxes. Indians with ties to biker gangs and organized crime
    typically serve as well-paid guides through the dense brush and across
    the
    waterways of the reserve.

    The FBI has stressed that there is no evidence that the individuals
    being
    sought have links with terrorist groups or are plotting attacks against
    American targets. Entering the United States without reporting to a
    border
    station or gaining entry with false identity papers is illegal.
    However, it
    is highly unusual - some observers say unprecedented - for the federal
    government to raise such a high-profile search for routine illegal
    immigrants.

    The five identified by the FBI are Abid Noraiz Ali, Iftikar Khozmai
    Ali,
    Adil Pervez, Akbar Jamal, and Mustafa Khan Owasi, although the names
    are
    believed to be false.

    In a peculiar twist, FBI agents in Pakistan questioned yesterday a
    Lahore
    jeweler, Mohammed Ashgar, who asserted that the photograph released by
    US
    authorities under the Owasi name was Ashgar's, though he said he had
    never
    traveled to North America. He told the Associated Press, however, that
    he
    recently had used illegal documents in an unsuccessful bid to travel to
    Britain.

    Speaking to reporters in Crawford, Texas, President Bush called
    Ashgar's
    story curious and defended the unusual manhunt: ''If we think there's a
    smuggling ring that's willing to smuggle people in that might harm
    America,
    we'll deal with that.''

    Hamdani and Elahi, the suspected forgers, were arrested on Oct. 31
    during a
    raid on a house in Brampton, a suburb of Toronto. The Canadian
    Broadcasting
    Corporation and other Canadian news media reported that Hamdani, who is
    charged with fraud, provided information to the Peel Regional Police
    and
    the Royal Canadian Mounted Police on individuals who may have entered
    the
    United States from Canada, thus sparking the far-flung dragnet.

    The RCMP declined to comment on the reports. A high-ranking Canadian
    offical, however, confirmed that the RCMP and US authorities are
    engaged in
    an ''intensive investigation,'' centering on the Toronto area, into
    smuggling and passport forgery rings that may have helped would-be
    terrorists gain US entry.

    Canada has been criticized by the United States, France, and other
    Western
    nations for generous immigration and refugee policies that have made it
    an
    easy hiding place, base of operations, and fund-raising center for
    international terrorists.

    Ontario's security minister urged Ottawa yesterday to take a harder
    line on
    individuals who arrive in the country claiming asylum as political
    refugees. Under current policies, even those who arrive with false
    identity
    papers or with records of terrorist links are more or less
    automatically
    provided with welfare benefits, national health insurance cards, and
    allowed to live freely in Canada while their claims are researched by
    bureaucrats, a process that typically takes years.

    ''They should either be turned around and sent back from whence they
    came,
    or they should be incarcerated until such a time as we can assure
    ourselves
    they pose no risk to this continent,'' said Security Minister Bob
    Runciman.

    Last month, court documents filed by the Canadian Security Intelligence
    Service indicated that Al Qaeda operatives disguised as working
    immigrants
    are positioned in Montreal, Toronto, Vancouver, and other Canadian
    centers,
    maintaining frequent contact with similar ''sleeper cells'' in the
    United
    States.

    Mohammed Harkat, an Algerian national arrested in Ottawa on Dec. 10 and
    detained as a ''threat to national security,'' is alleged to be an Al
    Qaeda
    loyalist with ties to Osama bin Laden supporters in Europe, Pakistan,
    and
    the Middle East.

  2. #2
    Guest
    Law enforcement officials in the United States and Canada
    confirmed yesterday that as many as 19 individuals of Middle Eastern
    and
    Pakistani origin might have illegally entered the United States on Dec.
    24,
    not just the five who this week became the focus of an international
    manhunt led by the FBI.

    The search was triggered by information gained during the breakup of a
    sophisticated document-forging ring in Ontario, according to law
    enforcement officials. The forgers appear to have provided the fake
    passports, false names, and photographs under which the individuals may
    have infiltrated the United States by way of Canada, possibly on a
    terror
    mission, although the FBI stressed that it does not know their true
    identities or their reasons for coming to the United States.

    The FBI and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police are trying to determine
    whether the alleged passport forgers - identified by Canadian media
    reports
    as Michael John Hamdani and Aftab Elahi of Brampton, Ontario - might be
    linked to a broad conspiracy or are simply suspects in a criminal
    enterprise with no agenda other than illicit profit. Hamdani is wanted
    by
    US authorities on forgery charges believed related to falsified travel
    documents, according to Canadian police.

    Meanwhile, an alert sent by the US Immigration and Naturalization
    Service
    to all US-Canadian points of entry on Dec. 27 contained 19 names,
    including
    the five men of Middle Eastern or Pakistani origin identified by the
    FBI,
    according to law enforcement officials with direct knowledge of the
    investigation. Officials are seeking to determine whether all 19
    surreptitiously crossed the border and whether all or some are
    operatives
    for Al Qaeda or affiliated terror groups.

    All of the names apparently were provided to US officials some weeks
    after
    Canadian police raided a house in suburban Toronto and seized
    counterfeit
    passports, fake driver's licenses, and stacks of passport photos,
    charging
    Hamdani and Elahi with fraud.

    Canada late yesterday dropped fraud charges against Hamdani in exchange
    for
    his agreement to surrender to American authorities in New York to face
    forgery charges and assist the FBI in its search for the illegal
    immigrants
    who may be carrying fake documents he provided.

    An FBI official confirmed last night that the agency has expanded its
    search from the original five to an unspecified number of other
    foreign-born individuals, believed to be Arabs or Pakistanis. They
    might
    have illegally entered the United States from Canada on or shortly
    before
    Dec. 24, carrying false passports and other forged documentation,
    including
    European driver's licenses.

    Another American law enforcement official, speaking on condition of
    anonymity, said that investigators also are probing the possibility
    that
    some of the individuals sneaked into the United States by way of the
    Akwesasne Mohawk Reserve, which straddles the borders of Ontario,
    Quebec,
    and New York State.

    For years, the reserve has been a notorious smuggling route, serving as
    a
    conduit for illegal immigrants bound for the United States and for
    contraband goods, mainly cigarettes and alcohol, headed for Canada to
    avoid
    heavy US taxes. Indians with ties to biker gangs and organized crime
    typically serve as well-paid guides through the dense brush and across
    the
    waterways of the reserve.

    The FBI has stressed that there is no evidence that the individuals
    being
    sought have links with terrorist groups or are plotting attacks against
    American targets. Entering the United States without reporting to a
    border
    station or gaining entry with false identity papers is illegal.
    However, it
    is highly unusual - some observers say unprecedented - for the federal
    government to raise such a high-profile search for routine illegal
    immigrants.

    The five identified by the FBI are Abid Noraiz Ali, Iftikar Khozmai
    Ali,
    Adil Pervez, Akbar Jamal, and Mustafa Khan Owasi, although the names
    are
    believed to be false.

    In a peculiar twist, FBI agents in Pakistan questioned yesterday a
    Lahore
    jeweler, Mohammed Ashgar, who asserted that the photograph released by
    US
    authorities under the Owasi name was Ashgar's, though he said he had
    never
    traveled to North America. He told the Associated Press, however, that
    he
    recently had used illegal documents in an unsuccessful bid to travel to
    Britain.

    Speaking to reporters in Crawford, Texas, President Bush called
    Ashgar's
    story curious and defended the unusual manhunt: ''If we think there's a
    smuggling ring that's willing to smuggle people in that might harm
    America,
    we'll deal with that.''

    Hamdani and Elahi, the suspected forgers, were arrested on Oct. 31
    during a
    raid on a house in Brampton, a suburb of Toronto. The Canadian
    Broadcasting
    Corporation and other Canadian news media reported that Hamdani, who is
    charged with fraud, provided information to the Peel Regional Police
    and
    the Royal Canadian Mounted Police on individuals who may have entered
    the
    United States from Canada, thus sparking the far-flung dragnet.

    The RCMP declined to comment on the reports. A high-ranking Canadian
    offical, however, confirmed that the RCMP and US authorities are
    engaged in
    an ''intensive investigation,'' centering on the Toronto area, into
    smuggling and passport forgery rings that may have helped would-be
    terrorists gain US entry.

    Canada has been criticized by the United States, France, and other
    Western
    nations for generous immigration and refugee policies that have made it
    an
    easy hiding place, base of operations, and fund-raising center for
    international terrorists.

    Ontario's security minister urged Ottawa yesterday to take a harder
    line on
    individuals who arrive in the country claiming asylum as political
    refugees. Under current policies, even those who arrive with false
    identity
    papers or with records of terrorist links are more or less
    automatically
    provided with welfare benefits, national health insurance cards, and
    allowed to live freely in Canada while their claims are researched by
    bureaucrats, a process that typically takes years.

    ''They should either be turned around and sent back from whence they
    came,
    or they should be incarcerated until such a time as we can assure
    ourselves
    they pose no risk to this continent,'' said Security Minister Bob
    Runciman.

    Last month, court documents filed by the Canadian Security Intelligence
    Service indicated that Al Qaeda operatives disguised as working
    immigrants
    are positioned in Montreal, Toronto, Vancouver, and other Canadian
    centers,
    maintaining frequent contact with similar ''sleeper cells'' in the
    United
    States.

    Mohammed Harkat, an Algerian national arrested in Ottawa on Dec. 10 and
    detained as a ''threat to national security,'' is alleged to be an Al
    Qaeda
    loyalist with ties to Osama bin Laden supporters in Europe, Pakistan,
    and
    the Middle East.

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