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Panel Says No Evidence Of Iran Knowledge Of 9/11 Plot

Washington, 22 July 2004 (RFE/RL) -- The chairman of a U.S. commission investigating the 11 September 2001 attacks says the panel has uncovered no information suggesting that Iran knew anything about the plot or that it helped the hijackers.

New Jersey Governor Thomas Kean made the comment in Washington after the panel's final report was released today. He also said Iran and Al-Qaeda had some sort of a relationship.

"There is no evidence whatsoever, for instance, that Iran knew anything about the attack on 9/11 or, certainly, assisted it in any way whatsoever. So, we know of a relationship. How deep that relationship is, and we don't know if it exists to this day -- that's going to require more research," Kean said.

Kean said the commission believes a number of the Al-Qaeda hijackers were able to pass through Iran to meet Osama bin Laden in Afghanistan without the authorities in Tehran stamping their passports.