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Pakistan Arrests Senior Yemeni Al-Qaida Operative in Karachi

Pakistan says its security forces have arrested a senior al-Qaida operative, who is a Yemeni national, in the southern city of Karachi.

The Pakistani military issued a statement Tuesday identifying the man as Muhammad Ali Qasim Yaqub, alias Abu Sohaib al-Makki. It says preliminary investigations show al-Makki was working "directly under al-Qaida leaders" along the border between Pakistan and Afghanistan.

The Pakistani statement described the arrest as a "major development in unraveling the al-Qaida network operating in the region." It gave no other details. It was not immediately possible to locate further information about al-Makki.

Pakistan has come under pressure from Western powers to explain how al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden was able to hide in the Pakistani city of Abbotobad until U.S. Special Forces killed him in a covert raid on May 2.

Pakistan denies harboring bin Laden and says it has paid a heavy price for its own battle against al-Qaida militants and their Taliban allies, whose attacks have killed tens of thousands of Pakistanis in recent years.

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