Friday, June 24, 2005

Italy to arrest 13 CIA agents

An Italian judge has ordered the arrest of 13 agents of the Central Intelligence Agency for allegedly kidnapping an Egyptian cleric on a Milan street two years ago and transporting him to a prison in Egypt for questioning, Italian prosecutors and investigators said Friday.

Judge Chiara Nobili of Milan signed the arrest warrants Thursday for 13 CIA agents suspected of capturing a radical imam named Hassan Mustafa Osama Nasr, also known as Abu Omar, as he walked to his mosque for noon prayers on Feb. 17, 2003. His family claims that he has been tortured by his Egyptian captors.

The chief CIA spokeswoman, Jennifer Millerwise, declined to comment on the Italian charges. Press officers at the U.S. Embassy in Rome and the U.S. Consulate in Milan declined to comment about the arrest warrants on Friday. CIA officials in Washington were unavailable for comment.

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