Pakistan to Deport Bin Laden Widows
A Pakistani court on Monday sentenced Osama bin Laden’s three widows and two of his daughters to a month and a half in prison for illegal residency.
Their lawyer Muhammad Aamir told AFP the sentence retroactively began on March 3 when they were placed under house arrest, and that they will be deported when their sentence is complete.
“The interior secretary has been directed to arrange their deportation,” Aamir told reporters, adding their Islamabad villa had been declared a “sub jail”.
“I think it will be completed probably in two weeks,” he said, adding they had each been fined 10,000 rupees (about USD 110).
One of Bin Laden’s widows is from Yemen, while the other two wives are from Saudi Arabia. Last month, the court had given the five women copies of the case and evidence against them.
Pakistani Interior Minister Rehman Malik has said previously that the children not involved in the case were free to leave Pakistan, or could stay with their mothers for the duration of their sentence.
Zakarya Ahmad Abdalfattah, the Yemeni brother of one of the wives, appealed to the court to allow the women to leave Pakistan immediately but failed to sway the court.
“The court has also given direction to the government to arrange the necessary documents for their earliest repatriation, so that they can go to their own country as soon as possible,” Abdulfattah told reporters, adding that the fine would have to be paid before they depart Pakistan.
Abdalfattah’s sister, Amal, was wounded during the targeted assassination of Bin Laden by US Navy SEALs.
Bin Laden and his wives were living with eight of their children and three employees in Abbottabad, within sight of a Pakistani military academy, when the raid took place.
The revelation of Bin Laden's presence in Pakistan was deeply embarrassing for Islamabad and strained relations with Washington, which remain chilly.