Pakistan plans to build a $30 million amusement park and outdoor activity center on the edge of the northwestern town of Abbottabad, where U.S. special forces killed Osama bin Laden, an official said on Monday.
The private venture in the foothills of the Himalayas will include a zoo, water sports, a mini-golf course, rock climbing and paragliding, said Jamaluddin Khan, the deputy provincial minister for tourism.
“The project will take five years to complete,” he told Reuters.
U.S. Navy SEALs killed the al Qaeda leader in 2011 in a secret raid that humiliated Pakistan’s military - which has an academy nearby - and heavily strained ties between strategic allies Washington and Islamabad.
Exclusive: Reuters obtains Pentagon letter on Osama bin Laden book
Exclusive: Former Navy SEAL in “material breach” of non-disclousre agreements with Osama bin Laden book, according to the Pentagon’s top attorney in a letter obtained by Reuters.
The Pentagon says it is considering “all remedies legally available” against the former Navy SEAL and all those acting in concert with him. The Pentagon says further public dissemination of the book “will aggravate your breach and violation of your agreements.”
Pakistani authorities have sentenced a doctor accused of helping the CIA find Osama bin Laden to 33 years in jail on charges of treason, officials said, a move almost certain to further strain ties between Washington and Islamabad.
Shakil Afridi was accused of running a fake vaccination campaign, in which he collected DNA samples, that is believed to have helped the American intelligence agency track down bin Laden in a Pakistani town.
The al Qaeda chieftain was killed in a unilateral U.S. special forces raid in the town of Abbottabad in May last year.
“Dr Shakil has been sentenced to 33 years imprisonment and a fine of 320,000 Pakistani rupees ($3,477),” said Mohammad Nasir, a government official in the northwestern city of Peshawar, where the jail term will be served. He gave no further details.
Afridi is the first person to be sentenced by Pakistani authorities in the bin Laden case.
First there is the phone call. It’s a quiet Sunday afternoon in Washington when the phone rings. “Can you be at the White House for a meeting in four hours? I can’t tell you why, but we need you to be there.”
Hmmm … I’ve seen this show before, and I pretty much know what the deal is. President Obama is going to be traveling somewhere unsavory and everything about it will be Top Secret until he lands at his mystery destination.
A beautiful weekend here in the D.C. area is instantly transformed from worrying about my son’s soccer games to worrying about where I am going, how long I will be gone and what preparations must I make before departure? The wheels are already churning before the White House meeting that evening.
As soon as we walk into the meeting, we are told: our destination is Afghanistan. Purpose: to sign a strategic partnership agreement. Coincidentally, or not, it is the one year anniversary of the killing of Osama Bin Laden.
Al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden was not the “puppet master” of jihadi groups around the world and was burdened by what he saw as their “incompetence,” according to an analysis of documents seized from his hideout in Pakistan.
The Combating Terrorism Center, a privately funded research center at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, posted on its website on Thursday some declassified documents taken in the raid on bin Laden’s house in Abbottabad in which he was killed by U.S. forces a year ago. (http:www.ctc.usma.edu)
“On the basis of the 17 declassified documents, Bin Ladin was not, as many thought, the puppet master pulling the strings that set in motion jihadi groups around the world,” a report on the documents by the Combating Terrorism Center said. “Bin Ladin was burdened by what he saw as their incompetence.”
The center spells bin Laden’s name as Bin Ladin.
U.S. President Barack Obama shakes hands with U.S. Ambassador to Afghanistan Ryan Crocker upon his arrival at Bagram Air Base in Kabul, Afghanistan May 1, 2012. [REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque]