Doctor who helped find Bin Laden speaks out

2013-12-02 07:10

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Peshawar - A Pakistani doctor who helped the CIA find Osama bin Laden has spoken out to demand better conditions in prison and complain of being falsely implicated in a treason case, his lawyer said on Sunday.

Shakeel Afridi also called for access to his lawyer in a letter that his attorney Samiullah Afridi, who shares his client's tribal name, said was genuine.

Shakeel Afridi was arrested and charged with betraying his country after US troops killed al-Qaeda leader bin Laden in the town of Abbottabad in May 2011.

He was initially sentenced to 33 years in jail and given a fine, but a court in the northwestern city of Peshawar overturned his sentence in August and ordered a retrial.

Denied access to lawyer

"I have been arrested and implicated in a false case," said Afridi in the letter, a copy of which was obtained by AFP.

"I am perhaps the first Pakistani who has been denied access to his lawyer. What kind of justice is this," said the letter.

In the letter, Afridi argued it was his legal right to see his lawyer, and said: "I am a [government] officer and a respectable Pakistani citizen".

He called for access to better conditions and security in jail.

He also said he did not know on what basis his sentence had been overturned.

Afridi was recruited by the CIA to run a vaccination programme in Abbottabad in the hope of obtaining DNA samples that could help identify bin Laden, although medics never managed to gain access to the family.

The doctor was convicted of treason under Pakistan's tribal justice system in 2012 - not for working for the CIA, for which the court said it had no jurisdiction, but for alleged ties to militants.

A tribunal is set to hear an appeal from Afridi on 9 December seeking a fresh investigation prior to retrial.

Afridi is also facing a murder charge, after authorities in Peshawar on 23 November charged him with killing the son of a tribal woman.

Read more on:    osama bin laden  |  pakistan

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.