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January 28, 2022

Bin Laden sons protest to US over ‘arbitrary killing’

NEW YORK – A statement given to the New York Times newspaper said the family wanted to know why the al-Qaeda leader had not been captured alive. Relatives who survived the 2 May raid in Pakistan should be freed, it said, according to the BBC. Another statement appeared on a jihadist website saying the burial of Bin Laden at sea “demeans and humiliates his family”.

Attorney General Eric Holder has said that the killing was lawful and “an act of national self-defence”. The statement printed by the New York Times was attributed to Bin Laden’s fourth son, Omar Bin Laden, who has repeatedly distanced himself from his father’s ideology. It said that in absence of a body or photographic evidence, the family were not convinced he was dead. But if he was dead, it said, they were questioning “why an unarmed man was not arrested and tried in a court of law so that truth is revealed to the people of the world”. They argue Bin Laden’s killing had broken international law and that figures such as former Iraqi President Saddam Hussein and Serbian President Slobodan Milosevic had been given the chance to stand trial.

The family said they were demanding an inquiry into why Bin Laden was “summarily executed without a court of law” and demanded the release of his three wives and several children, who are believed to be in Pakistani custody. The statement also said the US decision to bury Bin Laden’s corpse at sea had deprived the family of performing religious rites.

Members of the Senate Armed Services Committee and the Senate Intelligence Committee, as well as those in the equivalent House committees, will be allowed to view the photographs taken of Osama bin Laden after he was killed, a U.S. official told CNN Tuesday. The viewings will take place at CIA headquarters in northern Virginia at a time to be decided, the official said.
Meanwhile, Pakistani officials said today they’re interested in studying the remains of the U.S.’s secret stealth-modified helicopter abandoned during the Navy SEAL raid of Osama bin Laden’s compound, and suggested the Chinese are as well, according to ABC News. The former president of Pakistan, Pervez Musharraf, admitted to ABC News that rogue lower-level members of Pakistan’s Inter-Service Intelligence Agencies and military may have helped Osama bin Laden hide in plain sight near the capital, Islamabad. Musharraf also said he agreed with Pakistan’s refusal to allow the U.S. back into bin Laden’s compound. “No government can accept a violation of their sovereignty,” Musharraf said in an interview with ABC News. In the interview Musharraf called Osama bin Laden’s six-year residence in the military town of Abbottabad, Pakistan, a “big blunder” on the part of Pakistani intelligence.

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