Abu Qatada may be flown from Britain on Sunday on chartered plane

July 6, 2013 at 1:06 AM
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LONDON, July 6 (UPI) -- Imprisoned extremist Muslim cleric Abu Qatada will be flown from England to Jordan on a chartered airplane, British officials say.

The plane is expected to take off Sunday from RAF Northolt near London, The Daily Telegraph reported. Qatada is scheduled to be transferred to the base from the high-security Belmarsh Prison late Saturday.

British security officers and representatives of a human-rights organization in Jordan will accompany Qatada on the plane. Once it touches down, he is expected to be transferred immediately to a prison 40 miles from Amman, Jordanian officials told the Telegraph.

"There will be a prison vehicle waiting for him on the tarmac of the runway at the airport," one official said.

Britain granted Qatada asylum in 1994 but has been trying to deport him for more than a decade and has kept him behind bars much of the time. He was convicted in absentia in Jordan of terror-related charges in the 1990s.

Qatada's wife and five children are expected to remain in Britain.

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