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BAGHDAD, Iraq - A suicide bomber captured before he could blow himself up in a Shiite mosque claimed he was kidnapped, beaten and drugged by insurgents who forced him to take on the mission. The U.S. military said its medical tests indicated the man was telling the truth.
Mohammed Ali, who claimed to be Saudi-born and appeared to be in his 20s, said he managed to flee after another suicide attacker set off his bomb, killing at least 12 worshippers Friday as they left a mosque in the northern city of Tuz Khormato.
In confession broadcast on state television later that day, Ali told Iraqi interrogators he did not want to bomb the mosque and hoped to go home.
Results from medical tests on Ali were "consistent with his story and characterization of his treatment," Col. Billy J. Buckner, a U.S. military spokesman said Sunday.
Ali said insurgents kidnapped him from a field near his home earlier this month, then drugged and beat him.
His story was similar to those recounted by other captured militants. The captives routinely claim they were either coerced or fooled by insurgent leaders who promised them a role in the holy war against the U.S. military, only to find themselves as would-be suicide bombers sent to attack civilians.