13 millennium terror suspects held in Jordan

THE UNITED STATES revealed yesterday that 13 suspects had been arrested in Jordan for planning to commit acts of terrorism over the New Year period. US officials anonymously suggested that several others had been arrested on similar charges in other countries in the Middle East in recent days.

The confirmation of the arrests came four days after the release by the US State Department of a worldwide warning to Americans travelling abroad to be especially vigilant at the turn of the year. Washington said it had credible evidence that Americans were being targeted for terror attacks. The White House added that the 13 arrested in Jordan were believed to be connected with the Saudi exile, Osama bin Laden. They said that they had come to Jordan from Afghanistan where bin Laden is thought to be in hiding and where they allegedly received military training.

"We certainly believe these were members of bin Laden's organisation that posed a threat to Americans," Joe Lockhart, President Clinton's spokesman, said.

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