Reports this morning indicate that Osama Bin Laden is hiding in North-West Pakistan. A senior NATO official has told reporters that Bin Laden is being sheltered in a house in the region somewhat supported by the Pakistani government. A report from the Daily Telegraph says:
However, the Nato official said bin Laden was thought to have ranged from the mountainous Chitral area near the Chinese border, to the Kurram Valley which borders Afghanistan's Tora Bora, one of the Taliban strongholds during the US invasion in 2001.
North Waziristan, in particular, has become a nexus for Afghan, Pakistani and Arab militants as they plot attacks against Nato forces across the border in Afghanistan.
Earlier this month a leaked White House report accused its ally Pakistan of playing a double game by avoiding "military engagements that would put it in direct conflict with Afghan Taliban or al-Qaeda forces in North Waziristan".
A senior Pakistani security official denied that bin Laden was being protected and said the latest allegations were designed to heap pressure on Islamabad ahead of talks in Washington this week that would focus on strengthening co-operation between the two countries.If this report turns out to be true the implications for the U.S.-Pakistan relationship could be disastrous. Reason being, that Pakistan has denied for years that Bin Laden was hiding in Pakistan and that the Pakistani government was sheltering him. Of course, the U.S. and Pakistan have always had a "frienemy" relationship because Pakistan likes to help the U.S. when it is convenient and also help the Taliban when it benefits them. If this turns out to be true, it would not be surprising.
Photo Credit: Daily Telegraph