President dismisses claims of Pearl's death -Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF)

Paksitan Press Foundtion

President dismisses claims of Pearl’s death

WASHINGTON- President General Musharraf on Thursday dismissed claims by the alleged kidnapper of US journalist Daniel Pearl that the reporter was dead and said his government was exerting “all kinds of pressure” to secure his release.

British-born militant Sheikh Omar told a court on Thursday that Pearl was dead, reversing earlier statements to the police and sowing new confusion into the case, according to sources in the court.

“I know he is dead. I will not defend the case,” a source quoted Omar as telling the anti-terrorism court during his brief appearance in Karachi. State prosecutor Raja Qureshi, who was in court during the hearing, said Omar had also admitted responsibility for Pearl’s abduction. “I can’t comment with any degree of surety. I hope and pray that he is alive,” Musharraf told reporters in Congress. “There is a key personality who is under custody and he is creating a little degree of confusion by saying something one day and another thing the other day… But we are not believing him. We are putting all kinds of pressure. All the intelligence agencies in Pakistan, including the FBI, are on the case.”

Source: The News
Date:2/15/2002