By Arab News
The 12-year-old daughter of Osama Bin Laden, now in custody with a Yemeni wife of the Al-Qaeda leader, saw her father shot dead, a Pakistani intelligence official said on Wednesday.
The child “was the one who confirmed to us that Osama was dead and shot and taken away,” said the official from the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) agency.
Al Arabiya television went further, suggesting that Bin Laden was first taken prisoner and then shot.
“A source in the Pakistani security quoted the daughter of Bin Laden as saying that the leader of Al-Qaeda was not killed inside his house, but had been arrested and was killed later,” Al Arabiya said.
Amid raging controversy over the Al-Qaeda leader’s swift burial at sea, in what many say was a violation of Islamic custom, White House spokesman Jay Carney said President Barack Obama had decided not to release photos of Bin Laden’s body.
He said Obama had seen the photographs US forces took of Bin Laden after they killed the Al-Qaeda leader.
US administration officials discussed whether to release the images, but the president ultimately decided he did not want to make available graphic photos that could become a propaganda tool.
The spokesman said the president believes the DNA and facial analysis proves the man US forces shot was Bin Laden, and the photos are not needed as further proof.
US Attorney General Eric Holder earlier stressed that the US raid was “lawful” and “an act of national self-defense.”
But human rights campaigners and religious leaders urged the US and Pakistan to explain fully the circumstances in which Bin Laden died and buried.
“In Islam, we don’t have this tradition of throwing the dead in the sea,” said Saudi journalist Asem Al-Ghamdi, arguing that the burial was a deliberate distraction.
Saudi Sheikh Abdul Mohsen Al-Obaikan, an adviser to the Saudi Royal Court, said: “That is not the Islamic way. The Islamic way is to bury the person in land (if he has died on land) like all other people.”
Amidhan, a member of Indonesia’s Ulema Council (MUI), said he was more concerned about the burial than the killing.
“Burying someone in the ocean needs extraordinary situation. Is there one?,” he said.
A senior Muslim religious leader in New Delhi, Syed Ahmed Bukhari, said US troops could have easily captured Bin Laden.
“America is promoting jungle rule everywhere, whether in Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan or Libya. People have remained silent for long but now it has crossed all limits.”
There has been little questioning of the operation in the US, where Bin Laden’s killing was greeted with street celebrations.
A New York Times/CBS News poll showed President Obama’s approval jumped 11 points to 57 percent after the operation, though Americans feared revenge attacks.
The CIA said it kept Pakistan out of the loop because it feared Bin Laden would be tipped off.
Pakistan, meanwhile, blamed worldwide intelligence lapses for a failure to detect Bin Laden.
“There is an intelligence failure of the whole world, not just Pakistan alone,” Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani said in Paris.
“(If there are) … lapses from the Pakistan side, that means there are lapses from the whole world.”
Geoffrey Robertson, a prominent London-based human rights lawyer, said the killing “may well have been a cold-blooded assassination” that risked making Bin Laden a martyr.
US helicopters carrying the commandos used radar “blind spots” in the hilly terrain along the Afghan border to enter Pakistani airspace undetected in the early hours of Monday.
The Pakistani newspaper Dawn compared the latest incident with the admission in 2004 that one of the country’s top scientists had sold its nuclear secrets.
“Not since Abdul Qadeer Khan confessed to transferring nuclear technology to Iran and Libya has Pakistan suffered such an embarrassment,” it said.
The streets around Bin Laden’s compound in Abbottabad remained sealed off on Wednesday, with police and soldiers allowing only residents to pass through.
In Afghanistan, the Taleban challenged the truth of Bin Laden’s death, saying Washington had not provided “acceptable evidence to back up their claim” that he had been killed.