News24

Courier phone call helped nab bin Laden

2011-05-07 14:57

Washington - An innocuous phone call from Osama bin Laden's courier to an old friend was a key turning point in the decade-long hunt for the al-Qaeda leader, the Washington Post reported on Saturday.

A friend had called to catch up with Abu Ahmed al-Kuwaiti, the pseudonym for the man US investigators said was the main courier for bin Laden.

When asked how he had been and what he was doing now, al-Kuwaiti responded, "I'm back with the people I was with before."

After a pause, the friend replied: "May God facilitate."

On hearing this exchange, US intelligence officers knew they were on to something, the report said.

Phone number

That call led them to the fortified compound in Abbottabad, 60km north of Islamabad, where bin Laden was shot dead on Monday in a raid by elite US commandos.

"This is where you start the movie about the hunt for bin Laden," the Post quoted one US official as saying.

US intelligence agencies had been searching for al-Kuwaiti for four years and that call gave them the number of the courier's mobile phone.

The compound where bin Laden lived had no telephone lines or internet. Al-Kuwaiti and others would drive 90 minutes away from the house before putting batteries in their mobile phones and then make calls, in order to avoid any kind of surveillance.

Comments
  • PMG - 2011-05-07 15:52

    @Hungwe - You are 100% correct.It was probably apartheids fault that the ministers wife is a convicted drug dealer.

  • DILLIGAS - 2011-05-07 15:57

    Well, the scientists have said for years that cell phones are bad for you health....I guess in bin Laden's case they were dead right!

  • Lennox - 2011-05-07 16:25

    The cell phone also brought Hansie Cronje's career to an end. Strange how Osama had no telephone/internet,etc but overlooked the fact that he could be traced via the courier's cell phone, cost him his life.

  • Gonny@24.com - 2011-05-07 16:48

    Cant a person read an article on News24 without it being analogised to farm murders, Malema, ANC or Zimbabwe. U people really need to get a life stop being negative - you are creating this monster called ANC or Malema by your own constant whining about them - you are making them more famous and well known which is the opposite effect of what you really want!

      Grazy - 2011-05-07 17:32

      Waaa val jy uit huuuu???

      Andy49 - 2011-05-07 17:47

      @Gonny@24.com what is this new SA word 'analogised", is it in the Pedi dictionary? if not then it can't be a real word according to MaleEnema. Also not sure exactly what your rant refers to.

      LuLuBug - 2011-05-07 19:10

      Yes Gonny, you are right.

      Gonny@24.com - 2011-05-07 19:59

      @Andy49 - sorry mate i aint Black african u racist! So what it may not a be word - this 2011 - Internet forums are not for queens english - go to Buckingham palace if you want to speak like the queen..clearly u do not get my point so SHHHH!

      Martin du Plessis - 2011-05-08 09:33

      he didn't get your point because he doesn't know engrish. If you want to speak english and want your point carried across, then you need to speak properly. Also, he did not mention your race in any way.

  • Heks - 2011-05-07 19:10

    Shame, now the municipality is comsidering whether she still has a job or not. Sorry I am a ratepayer on the Hibiscus Coast and DEMAND that this woman go to jail and serve her sentence. We have enough incompetent people within our municipalities in this country.

      Wes - 2011-05-08 14:30

      It should be called the drug coast from now on

  • Cuppa - 2011-05-08 05:28

    Wonder if our intelligence work is on the same standard as the US. I doubt it if we have idots like Bheki Cele in charge of the police and a dumb minister of intelligence who did not know about his wife part time drug job. ANC you doing a fine job making a mockery of South Africa.

      Wes - 2011-05-08 14:35

      If you call it the department of intelligence one would think that was one of the requirements for people working there.

  • Satan - 2011-05-08 16:35

    it was an iphone .....

      slg - 2011-05-08 16:38

      Are you another anti-social person, like lenand, irene, sherwood, Brendon and a few others?

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