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Three Former Mujahedin Fighters Detained In Bosnia

SARAJEVO -- Three people charged with illegally residing in Bosnia-Herzegovina have been detained by Bosnian police and security services, RFE/RL's South Slavic and Albanian Languages Service reports.

One detainee, Aiman Awad, is a former member of the El-Mujahedin unit who was given citizenship for fighting in the Bosnian war in the mid-1990s. He had his citizenship revoked after his unit was accused of war crimes.

Awad, originally from Syria, was a witness in a case against Bosnian Army commander Rasim Delic, who was accused and sentenced by The Hague tribunal for crimes committed by El-Mujahedin against Serbs and Croats in central Bosnia.

An unknown number of fighters from Afghanistan and the Middle East came to Bosnia during early 1990s and joined the Bosnian Army.

Bosnian analyst Mugdim Galijasevic says the detention of the three men is a move against non-European citizens who were not necessarily involved in any terrorist activities.

He says that the only way to explain the arrests is to "interpret it as a response to the [U.S.] State Department's" report on terrorism.

Galijasevic says the arrests could also be connected to an upcoming visit by U.S. Vice President Joe Biden.