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Son-in-Law of Afghan Ex-President Detained in Pakistan - 2002-10-30

American and Pakistani security agents are said to have detained a close relative of Afghanistan's former prime minister, Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, who is wanted by the United States.

Senior police officials say that Ghairat Baheer, a son-in-law of the anti-American Afghan leader, was taken from his house in the Pakistani capital. But they refuse to confirm or deny reports that American agents also took part in the operation early Tuesday.

Members of Mr. Baheer's family say that computer equipment and personal files were seized, and five servants at the house were also arrested. Pakistan government ministers have refused to comment on the detention.

Mr. Baheer is suspected to be in contact with former Afghan Prime Minister Hekmatyar. The Afghan warlord is being hunted by the United States for calling for a jihad against the American military in Afghanistan. Mr. Hekmatyar's whereabouts are not known, but operations by the U.S. forces to track him down indicate he might be hiding in northeastern Afghanistan.

Mr. Hekmatyar heads Afghanistan's Hezb-i-Islami faction, which is blamed for a series of recent bomb attacks in the Afghan capital, Kabul. Mr. Hekmatyar was living in exile in Iran, but Iranian authorities forced him out of the country after Washington demanded his expulsion.

Western and Afghan intelligence officials think Mr. Hekmatyar may have joined hands with Taleban and al-Qaida remnants to try to destabilize the government of Afghan President Hamid Karzai.