August 8, 2005

UK court remands suspected militant wanted in U.S.

LONDON (Reuters) - A British court on Monday remanded in
custody a suspected Islamist radical arrested on a U.S.
extradition warrant which accuses him of trying to set up a
militant training camp in the state of Oregon.

Haroon Rashid Aswad, a 30-year-old British citizen, was
arrested at Northolt military airbase in northwest London on
Sunday after being deported from Zambia.

Dressed in a long black robe, Aswad appeared at Belmarsh
high-security courtroom in east London.

He stood behind a glass screen, flanked by police officers
with bulletproof vests, and spoke only to confirm his identity
and that he understood the charges against him.

"He denies any suggestion he's a terrorist or has engaged
in any terrorist activity," his lawyer Hussein Zahir told

A judge ordered Aswad to appear in court again on Thursday
for the start of extradition proceedings against him.

The U.S. warrant accuses Aswad of plotting with others
between October 1999 and April 2000 to train and equip people
to fight in Afghanistan.

He was arrested on July 20 in Zambia.

Initial media reports linked him to the July 7 London
suicide bombings that killed more than 50 people, but British
police say he was not thought to be involved in those attacks.