Briton charged with assault in Pakistan tribal zone

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A British man who has been held in a Pakistani jail for nearly a month has been charged with hitting a security officer who tried to arrest him, an official said Wednesday.

Nicholas Bain, 27, was arrested in Khyber, one of the seven districts that make up Pakistan's semi-autonomous tribal belt, described by Washington as a global headquarters of Al-Qaeda and the most dangerous place on Earth.

"He has been charged with assaulting a tribal policeman. He also resisted arrest and tried to run away," said Iftikhar Khan, an official at Central Jail Peshawar, the northwestern city where Bain is being held.

Bain was initially reported to have been aged 70, but officials said Wednesday that he was 27 years old.

The British High Commission (embassy) has confirmed only that he was arrested on August 28 and that consular assistance is being provided. Tribal officials said Bain was travelling in Khyber without the requisite permission.

© 2010 AFP

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