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CNN BREAKING NEWS

Pentagon Privately Reveals That John Walker is Being Flown Home

Aired January 22, 2002 - 10:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
DARYN KAGAN, CNN ANCHOR: First though, we get started with breaking news out of the Pentagon and Afghanistan. The latest on American Taliban fighter, John Walker.

Here's our Barbara Starr at the Pentagon. Barbara, good morning to you.

BARBARA STARR, CNN PENTAGON CORRESPONDENT: Good morning, Daryn. Well, military officials now privately tell CNN that the transfer process for John Walker has begun. And this involves moving John Walker off the USS Bataan, that Navy warship in the north Arabian Sea, where he has been for several weeks, moving him into southern Afghanistan, into Kandahar, where he will quickly be transferred onto a larger transport plane for his trip back to the United States.

Now, officials tell us privately, again, that this process is now underway. That it has begun, but security concerns are at an all time high, so publicly, the Pentagon will say nothing about this. And there is expected to be no official word for many, many hours. In fact, until Walker is back in the United States. We believe he will be flown into Kandahar. It is always possible, of course, though, he will be flown to another location, even possibly a U.S. air base in Pakistan, transferred, again, to a larger plane for his flight back to the United States.

Very few details are being offered. Walker could be back in the United States sometime tomorrow, depending on how many refueling stops are made. He is expected to be returned here to northern Virginia to face charges in federal court of conspiracy to kill Americans and supporting terrorists groups. And, of course, that federal court here in Virginia is just a few miles from the Pentagon, where we are now. Daryn?

KAGAN: Barbara Starr, with the latest from the Pentagon. Thank you very much. More on John Walker just ahead, and what his legal fate might be.

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