US arranging for release, family told


  • Nation
  • Thursday, 18 Sep 2003

BY AUDREY EDWARDS

PETALING JAYA: American forces in Iraq are arranging for the release of Malaysian student Mohd Abdullah Osman, whom they have detained for the past three months. 

His sister, Rohizan, said Wisma Putra officials contacted the family last week to update them on her brother’s situation. 

“They said the ICRC (International Committee of the Red Cross) had told them that my brother is in good health, except for a growth on the back of his neck, which swells every time he is under stress. And that he is still being detained in Umm Qasar,” she said when contacted on Tuesday. 

Mohd Abdullah, 35, was detained at the Syrian border by Arabs in June when he was returning home to Malaysia. He was then handed over to US troops and has been in Umm Qasar since July 9. 

He had completed his Masters in Hadith at Saddam University (now known as the University of Islam, Baghdad). 

Rohizan again questioned the delay in getting her brother released. 

“My family has been very patient but we are now getting restless. It is taking a very long time and we don’t know why. 

“We are just waiting and, hopefully, we’ll get at least a phone call or message from him,” she said. 

Fellow student and Mohd Abdullah’s housemate in Iraq, Mohd Manar Bajuri, said Mohd Abdullah had helped the Iraqis during the US-led invasion of Iraq. 

“He was always at the hospital during the war, where he would help buy things like water or donate money which we had collected from Malaysian tourists or officers,” Mohd Manar said. 

He said he got some details about his housemate’s detention from Iraqi Abu Abdullah, who had been detained with Mohd Abdullah, but was later released. 

“Abu told me that the Americans said Mohd Abdullah would be released the following day,” Mohd Manar said.  

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