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US Officials Meet With American Detained in Pakistan

Officials with the U.S. State Department say they have met with an American detained earlier this week near Pakistan's border with Afghanistan.

State Department Spokesman Sean McCormack Wednesday confirmed Pakistani authorities were questioning a U.S. citizen, who was arrested at a police checkpoint Monday, after trying to enter the Mohmand tribal area in Pakistan's northwest.

Pakistani police say the man is of Pakistani descent and did not have the necessary permission required by foreigners to enter the country's tribal region.

McCormack today said U.S. officials have visited the man, but declined to give specific details, including the man's name, citing privacy concerns.

He said in such situations, U.S. officials can provide a list of lawyers, give food and clothing, and help the U.S. citizen get in touch with family members.

The Pakistani military has been waging an offensive against al-Qaida and Taliban militants in the tribal region.

In the latest fighting, Pakistani security forces say at least four militants were killed in clashes today in the Bajaur tribal district.

Authorities say the main town of Khar has been placed under curfew as part of military operations in the area. Pakistan's military launched a major operation in the area in August.

U.N. officials say about 190,000 people living in the area have been displaced because of the fighting with many fleeing across the nearby border into Afghanistan.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.