Bin Laden hideout to become theme park

2013-02-06 09:03
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Pakistan's tourism officials have announced plans to build a $30m (R265m) amusement park on the outskirts of Abottabad the Himalayan foothills town where U.S. Navy SEALs killed Osama bin Laden.

NBC News reports that the 20ha site will include a zoo, restaurants, water sports, miniature golf as well as rock climbing and paragliding.

According to Sky News officials in the northwestern Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province hope the project will boost tourism, but denied it was intended to improve the town's image after the bin Laden raid.

"This project has nothing to do with Osama bin Laden," Syed Aqil Shah, the provincial minister for tourism and sports, told Sky News.

Jamaluddin Khan, the deputy provincial minister for tourism, told Reuters the project will take five years to complete, with work beginning in late February or early March.

U.S. forces killed the al-Qaida leader and director of the 9/11 attacks in a daring raid on his hideout in May 2011. The large white villa is not far from an elite Pakistani military academy. The villa was demolished in 2012.

According to the Pakistan tourism ministry's website, Abbottabad is a popular summer resort area and a gateway to mountain adventures. 

"It is a charming town spread out over several low, refreshingly cool and green hills," the site reads.

Read more on:    travel international

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