Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Canada 'train-plot' duo vow to defend

Two suspects in an alleged al-Qaeda-backed plot to derail a Canadian passenger train have challenged the case against them.

In a Montreal court, Chiheb Esseghaier, 30, said the case against him was based only on "appearances".

A lawyer for Raed Jaser, 35, said he would "defend himself vigorously", outside his hearing in Toronto, RTHK reports.

Officials said the alleged plot had support from al-Qaeda in Iran, although there was no sign of state sponsorship.

Canadian authorities said the two suspects were arrested in Montreal and Toronto on Monday.

Jaser is understood to be a United Arab Emirates national of Palestinian origin, though his lawyer points out he is a permanent Canadian resident who has lived there 20 years.

Esseghaier is thought to be of Tunisian origin. 

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