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Pakistan May Turn Over U.S. Spies to Iran

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    Pakistan May Turn Over U.S. Spies to Iran Jundullah Militants, Led by Abdel Malik Regi, Are Spies for the CIA By RICHARD ESPOSITO and BRIAN ROSS May 23,
    Message 1 of 1 , Jun 4, 2008
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      Pakistan May Turn Over U.S. 'Spies' to Iran
      Jundullah Militants, Led by Abdel Malik Regi, Are 'Spies' for the
      CIA

      By RICHARD ESPOSITO and BRIAN ROSS
      May 23, 2008
      ABC News


      In another sign of growing tensions with the United States,Pakistan
      is threatening to turn over to Iran six members of a tribal militant
      group Iran claims are "spies" for the CIA.


      Iran claims the militant group, Jundullah, led by Abdel Malik Regi,
      pictured bottom right, are "spies" for the CIA.(ABC News)


      The group, Jundullah, operates in Baluchistan on both sides of the
      border between Iran and Pakistan and has carried out a number of
      violentattacks on Iranian army facilities and officers inside the
      country. The CIA has denied any direct ties with the group, but U.S.
      officials tell ABC News U.S. intelligence officers frequently meet
      and advise Jundullah leaders, and current and former intelligence
      officers are working to prevent the men from being sent to Iran. The
      six Jundullah members were taken into custody by Pakistani
      authorities last week, and the Iranian Mehr News Agency reported
      Pakistan would soon extradite the men to Iran, where they would
      likely be put on trial as spies and face execution.

      ===

      Related
      Bush Authorizes New Covert Action Against Iran
      http://blogs.abcnews.com/theblotter/2007/05/bush_authorizes.html

      ===

      Officials said the group's leader, Abdel Malik Regi, was not among
      those arrested by Pakistan. U.S. intelligence officials say they are
      aware of thedevelopments with the Jundullah members and are said to
      be trying toblock the extradition.
      In addition to causing turmoil in Iran, the officials say the group
      has been helpful in tracking al Qaeda figures trying to move through
      the Baluchistan region to Iran.

      "The new Pakistan leaders have said they are going to do it, but
      they aresaying a lot of things and trying to make a lot of deals,"
      said one U.S. official.

      "If they are seeking stability inside the country, why would they
      want to inflame people in this region?" the official asked.

      Iranian officials claimed this week that the U.S. had "a hand" in an
      April 12 bomb attack at a mosque in Shiraz that killed 14 people,
      according to Mehr News Agency, quoting Iranian Intelligence Minister
      Gholam-Hossein Mohseni Ejei.

      "The U.S. is behind many events in Iran and the region with theaim
      of bringing insecurity," the intelligence minister reportedly said.

      "We have proper documentations in this regard," the minister told
      thenews agency's reporters. A senior U.S. official said Iran's
      claims "are nonsense, ludicrous."

      The capture of the Jundullah members is seen by intelligence sources
      in the region as another indication that Pakistan's new government
      is distancing itself from the U.S. and U.S. intelligence operations
      in the country.

      Other such steps by Pakistan in recent days include an accord
      between Pakistan's government and militant tribal leaders in the
      country's Swat Valley region where Taliban figures are believed to
      be hiding. Increasingly, U.S. sources say, Pakistan is effectively
      handcuffing U.S. ground efforts against al Qaeda in the border
      region and emboldening the Taliban.

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