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What really happened

Let’s go through some facts now:

  1. M. Saif Ur Rehman Khan had obtained his British A levels from a prestigious college in his hometown Islamabad, Pakistan.
  2. He has been extensively travelling across the world for tourism, including UK where he had also been taking part in fashion modeling as an amateur.
  3. Saif was suggested by his college principal (who also happened to be Visa Counselor of Chile in Pakistan) to go to Chile, Santiago to study Spanish language and to complete some time as an internee with the local hotel.
  4. Saif ur Rehman had been to the US earlier in 1996, and had a valid US visa several times. Most flights heading to South America do stop-over in United States. It was but natural for him to visit his brother in December 2009 who is pursuing his PhD in the United States.
  5. He stayed in the United States for a month and the family (Saif, his brother and family and children) and visited relatives. After a few weeks, he continued his journey to Santiago, Chile (Jan 2010).
  6. He completed his Spanish language course at a famous language-eFronteres institute in Santiago. Saif talked with his family in Pakistan and his brother in the US via Skype almost everyday. He has a very caring and close-knit family.
  7. In the week of May 3rd, 2010, he got a call from a person named “Bill” from the US Embassy in Santiago who asked him for a visit. He was not told about any visa issues or revoking procedures. Thus it seemed strange to him and his family that he was being called by the US embassy. Nevertheless, based on his advice from his friends and family he informed the director of the language institute as well as a friend from the Pakistan embassy in Santiago. The person at the Pakistani embassy in Chile also advised him to take all his educational document to the US embassy along with him as Saif was unsure about the reason for being called to the US embassy.
  8. Saif’s US visa was valid for the next five years and it never crossed anyone’s mind that he was being called for visa revoking as per the media reports. As per practice he had received his US visit visa from Islamabad after thorough investigation.
  9. On Friday May 7th, 2010, Saif was approached by three Americans at the mosque in Santiago.

10. Saif called back the person from the US embassy who had called him but a lady picked up the phone. Saif ur Rehman asked about Bill and informed her that he was called to the US embassy by that person. At this the phone was transferred to another person in the embassy and Saif was told that he should come to the US embassy on Monday, 3:00 pm, May 10th, 2010.

11. On Monday morning, Saif first visited the Spanish language (eFronteres) institute where he studied and met the Director of the Institute – Alejendra Vicencio.

12. Later in the day, he went to the US embassy. Not even knowing the purpose of his visit, he took all his educational documents with him. He met an officer inside his embassy who took his documents for “photocopy” and told him that everything is ok. He was then locked up in a room for a few hours.

13. Afterwards they had him arrested on charges that his documents were detected with some “explosive substance”. He was handed over to the Chilean police.

14. Without any formal charges, he was in detention from Monday to Saturday (5 days) and his family was and is devastated. He was later released based on courts judgment and again put behind bars for about a week.

15. The family found out about him through media reports and has not been able to contact him.

16. The Chilean police investigated and searched his apartment and no traces of any explosive substances were found there. It seems very controversial that the Special Police claims that it did find traces of some substance while the Chilean police did not find any traces of any harmful substance. Chilean Senator, “Alejandro Navarro also inquired why the Attorney that explained why the Police Intelligence Directorate of the Carabineros(Dipolcar) found no traces of explosives in the belongings of the young Pakistani Muhammad Saif Ur Rehman Khan (28), but so did the group Special Police Operations (BEPGs) of the institution.” (LaNacion  Newspaper).

These are the exact sequence of events. Saif is innocent and had nothing to do with the charges laid on him. He never even heard about any such things. He was in Chile to learn Spanish in a Spanish speaking environment and gain hotel management experience. We all pray and request others to hope and pray for his safe release.

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  1. thasin
    May 12, 2010 at 9:35 pm

    I know Saif and I know he is innocent. This is either a case of mistaken identity or a false alarm. Saif is innocent. His loving family is devastated and do not deserve what they are going through. God bless you Saif. We humbly request authorities to let him go free immediately. His family is open to talk to and will do everything that is asked off them to prove his innocence.

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