Three Arabs that traveled through Peru using false identification may be tied to the Sept. 11 attacks on America, Peruvian President Alejandro Toledo told Fox News.
"I can say this for the first time — we have identified three people who come from the Arab world with the falsified identification that came through Peru," Toledo said. "Some who are detained, some of them we are following them and we shared this information with our friendly countries because we think that this is sharing information is part of the collaboration to be effective in fighting against terror."
Toledo said he had long ago fulfilled his "commitment" to the intelligence-sharing front of the war on terrorism and volunteered this information privately to U.S. authorities and President Bush, but he said this was the first time he has talked about these matters publicly.
Asked if the Peruvian government had evidence that the three men were tied to Usama bin Laden's Al Qaeda terrorist network, Toledo would only say that it was a possibility.
"We cannot say that yet," he said. "The investigation is in process and it will be premature.
"But," he said, "there are some indications that by having a falsified identification — coming from country to country — within Latin America could provide some hunches as to what are the reasons. However, we have no definite conclusion on this."
Toledo said Peruvian intelligence identified one of the Middle Eastern men just days before Sept. 11.
"We had one of them identified three days before Sept. 11 and the other ones we identified after Sept. 11."
Saying he would not "fool around with the issue," Toledo pledged his commitment to Bush's war on terror, insisting that "if we don't have a global security we won't have a healthy economy and if our economies do not grow we will not have jobs and poverty will continue and expand."
The three individuals have not been charged, he said, and are still subject to a government investigation.
"We need to know why they have falsified identification, what do they do, how do they enter into Peru, what are their motives?"
Toledo refused to give the suspects' nationalities or specify how many of them might be in custody.
"They are in custody and some of them are being followed," he said.