January 11, 2010 2:00 am
A senior Jordanian official has defended the country's intelligence services from criticism raised in the wake of a deadly attack on the Central Intelligence Agency in Afghanistan by a Jordanian suicide bomber, writes Andrew England in Sana'a.
The official denied media reports that the country's intelligence services had sent Humam Khalil Abu-Mulal al-Balawi, the bomber, to Pakistan as part of a failed plan to track down senior al-Qaeda leaders.
The official said Balawi had travelled to Pakistan of his own volition after being questioned by Jordanian security services, who suspected him of possible militant links but who did not have enough evidence to charge him.
The official said Balawi had subsequently contacted Jordanian security officers by e-mail to share information on possible al-Qaeda attacks on Jordan and other countries, which they had then passed to US counterparts.
The Jordanians maintained the correspondence via e-mail to try to verify the information and - in co-operation with the US - lure him to a meeting.
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