Bin Laden’s decade on the run in Pakistan

New revelations about the life on the run of the world’s most wanted man…

Osama Bin Laden portrait in the window of a car © Adam Jones, Ph.D.


One of Osama Bin Laden’s wives, currently in the custody of Pakistani security forces, has been revealing details about his life while on the run from US forces for nearly ten years.

According to the New York Times, officials in the Obama administration have suggested the evidence of his wife,  30-year-old Amal Ahmad Abdul Fateh, fits with known details about his movements.

  • Saudi-born Fateh married Bin Laden in 2000, and joined him at his base outside Khandahar, before the family ‘scattered’ following the 9/11 terror attacks
  • In 2002 she was reunited with her husband in Peshawar, Pakistan, before the family moved to two different houses close to Islamabad. Bin Laden hadn’t lived in a ‘cave’ as had been thought previously.
  • Bin Laden fathered four children in two different locations in the years after 9/11. His extensive life in Pakistan means questions remain as to how it was concealed right under the noses of the country’s formidable security forces
  • The family were helped by numerous sources in Pakistan, including ‘the courier’, the man who was killed during the raid at Abbottabad
  • The raid by US Navy Seals killed Bin Laden and four others in the compound. Fateh was with him in the bedroom, and was shot in the knee
  • The evidence has renewed suspicion that elements in the intelligence services helped Bin Laden to hide in the country. This has been stoked by the Pakistanis’ decision to charge his wives with immigration offences

Defense analyst Riffat Hussain, on why Pakistan has decided to charge the wives rather than deport them back to Saudi Arabia and Yemen:

I think the government wants to hang on to them through a trial procedure so that the investigation can be completed…And I think the Americans are quite keen to have access to Osama’s wives, too.

Read more at The New York Times