Osama bin Laden's Son in Talks with UN to Release Family

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By Jeff Schapiro, Christian Post Reporter
July 1, 2011|9:07 pm

Osama bin Laden’s son, Omar bin Laden, says he is working with the United Nations to free his family members who are detained in Pakistan.

Amal Ahmed Abdulfattah, one of Osama bin Laden's widows, along with some of his children and two other wives are held in Pakistan.

“I want to send a message to the leaders of Pakistan,” Omar told Reuters. “They should help the children of Osama bin Laden to go wherever they want to go. The Pakistani government should protect them, because they are just innocent children and women.”

In May, the U.S. Navy SEAL team raided Osama bin Laden’s compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan and killed the infamous terrorist.

For the past year, Osama’s son Omar has been working on starting up his own property development company, called the Qatar bin Laden Group, in Qatar's capital of Doha. The real estate and construction businesses are how the bin Laden family became so wealthy in the first place. Osama used some of his family's wealth to pay for attacks against the U.S. and Saudi Arabia.

American author Jean Sasson interviewed Omar and his mother Najwa for a biography released last December titled Growing Up bin Laden. Sasson said the interviews revealed that Osama was a father who was involved in the raising of his children, and he taught his boys to be tough men.

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“He wanted his children to be strong, pious, and able to live under tremendous hardship,” said Sasson in a report by IBNlive.com. “I feel that he was too stern, but in their culture, the fathers are often very stern. Osama took it to new lengths, however.”

She also spoke of Omar, saying, “While I find Omar to be a gentle and kind person, I can assure you that he is a very tough man who could take care of himself and his entire family.” Najwa was Osama's cousin and first wife, whom he had 11 children with. Sasson's website and book say that Osama was a kind and gentle person when he married Najwa, but later he became more militant and harsh.

Omar told Reuters during an interview that because Barack Obama refused to release photographs of Osama after his death, he wasn't convinced that his father was, in fact, dead. In an interview with 60 Minutes after the raid, however, President Obama gave his reason for not releasing the photos, saying, “It is very important for us to make sure that very graphic photos of somebody who was shot in the head are not floating around as an incitement to additional violence - as a propaganda tool.”

Omar was certain that his brother Khalid was killed in the raid, however, because he says that he saw a photo that convinced him.

Osama bin Laden was found and killed just outside of Abbottabad in northwest Pakistan. Pakistani officials say they didn't know Osama was hiding there due to lapses in intelligence, though the U.S. has tried to determine whether or not he had been sheltered by the country, whose capital city of Islamabad is only about 40 miles away. Pakistani military officials have denied having any involvement in trying to hide Osama bin Laden.

 

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