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Dutch Free Two Men Held in Terror Scare

Dutch prosecuting authorities have freed two Yemeni men arrested in Amsterdam on suspicion of terrorism.

The men were taken into custody when they arrived Monday in Amsterdam on a United Airlines flight from Chicago. U.S. officials say they found a cell phone taped to a small bottle, multiple cell phones and watches taped together, a knife and a box cutter in their checked luggage.

At the request of the United States, Dutch officials initially detained the men on suspicion of conspiring to carry out a terrorist act. But officials say Ahmed Mohamed Nasser al-Soofi and Hezam al-Murisi were freed without charge Wednesday due to a lack of evidence of their involvement in a terror plot.

The Dutch prosecutors said tests conducted in the U.S. on the men's luggage did not reveal any signs of explosive material.

Both men had changed their travel plans at the last minute and taken the same direct flight to Amsterdam from Chicago, but their bags had continued on their original flights to Washington Dulles International Airport. Neither man had been on the no-fly terror watch list.

The scare took place just days before the ninth anniversary of the September 11, 2001 plane attacks, and eight months after a Nigerian man was accused of trying to blow up a Detroit-bound U.S. airliner on Christmas Day (December 25) of last year with explosives hidden in his underwear.

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