The escape in Pakistan last night of a British terror suspect has set off a nationwide manhunt and further strained precarious diplomatic relations between Britain and Pakistan, reports AFP. Guards returning Rashid Rauf, 26, to jail from a court appearance allowed him to stop for burgers and prayers, where Rauf vanished. "It seems his handcuffs (were) removed to let him say his prayers," said a jail spokesman.
Rauf's uncle, who was along for the ride, has been arrested. British officials suspect Rauf of participating in a conspiracy to blow up a dozen transatlantic airliners, and seek his extradition for a 2002 murder. Western observers are viewing Rauf's disappearance as "a cock-up not conspiracy." Pakistan has launched a major search, sealing off Islamabad and circulating Rauf's photograph to airports.