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Pak would have taken action if it had Osama’s hideout info
ISLAMABAD, MAY 9 (AGENCIES):
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Published on 10 May. 2011 12:57 AM IST
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Pakistan’s ambassador to the US, Husain Haqqani, has said that his country would have taken action had it been aware that Osama bin Laden was hiding in Abbottabad.
“If any member of the Pakistani government, the Pakistani military or the Pakistani intelligence service knew where Osama bin Laden was, we would have taken action,” The Dawn quoted Haqqani, as saying.
“Osama bin Laden’s presence in Pakistan was not to Pakistan’s advantage. A lot more people have been arrested in Pakistan, including Al Qaeda people, than in any other country. So Pakistan did not have a policy of protecting these people,” he added.
Haqqani also said that his country would take strict action against anybody in the government, military or intelligence, if found involved with the hiding of Osama bin Laden in the country. “Heads will roll once the investigation has been completed. Now, if those heads are rolled on account of incompetence, we will share that information with you. And if, God forbid, somebody’s complicity is discovered, there will be zero tolerance for that, as well. Pakistan wants to put to rest any, any misgivings the world has about our role,” he said.
While the US has raised speculation about Pakistan’s involvement in hiding bin Laden, Islamabad criticised the Obama administration for crossing its borders for the raid without prior information.
Obama had earlier said “there had to be some sort of support network for Bin Laden inside of Pakistan,” though he had insisted that US was not sure about what kind of support system he had there.
US seeks access to Osama’s three widows
As it seeks answers from Pakistan whether government or security officials were complicit in hiding Osama Bin Laden, the US has asked for access to the Al Qaeda leader’s three widows. The three women, who are in Pakistani custody since the May 1 American raid that killed bin Laden inside his Abbottabad hideout, just 50 km from Islamabad, US officials hope could unravel the mystery besides possibly providing more information about Al Qaeda, stated IANS.
“We’ve asked for access, obviously, to those folks,” the White House national security adviser, Thomas E. Donilon told ABC News Sunday referring to bin Laden’s family.
He also called upon Pakistani officials to provide Washington additional intelligence it might have gathered from the bin Laden hideout.
Donilon said the White House had put together a special task force to comb through the captured data and that it would work under Obama’s direction to pursue any leads the information yielded.
“The CIA is describing it to us as the size of a small college library,” Donilon said. But he would not say whether the data indicated any imminent threats to the United States.
While declining to comment on the specifics of the raid, Donilon said that the world view was that the raid was justified.
“The messages that have come back to us from around the world, and I study this fairly closely, is that this was a just action, that in fact this was a just action against a man who had committed murder, not just in the United States but around the world.”

 
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