11 November 2004 -- Kazakh authorities have arrested several suspected Al-Qaeda-linked Islamic militants in southern Kazakhstan.
Vladimir Bozhko, the deputy chairman of Kazakhstan's National Security Committee, made the announcement today in Astana. He said those arrested include nine Kazakh citizens and four Uzbeks. He said four Kazakh women were among the detained.
Bozhko said those arrested belong to the Jamaat Mujahedin of Central Asia, an Islamic militant group that authorities have linked to the Al-Qaeda terrorist network.
Bozhko said that one of the Uzbeks was found with "instructions from abroad" for planning attacks in Uzbekistan. He said police seized weapons, ammunition, explosive devices, and forged passports as well as videos and audiocassettes containing messages from Osama bin Laden in the operation.