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Sharif met Osama five times,says former ISI official

Former Pakistan Prime Minister and PML-N chief Nawaz Sharif has met al-Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden five times,a former official...

Written by Agencies | Islamabad |
September 10, 2009 4:23:38 am

Former Pakistan Prime Minister and PML-N chief Nawaz Sharif has met al-Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden five times,a former official of Pakistan’s Inter Services Intelligence (ISI) has said. Speaking to ARY News programme Eleventh Hour,Khalid Khwaja — now chairman of Defence of Human Rights organisation — claimed that he had arranged meetings between Osama and Sharif on the Qaeda chief’s request. He said Sharif has had five such meetings with Osama.

The claim was denied by Sharif’s PML-N,which has said that the former ISI officials claims were baseless.

“I challenge the deniers of such meetings and can present solid evidences in this respect,” Khwaja was quoted as saying by ARY News on Wednesday. He also said that he hoped Sharif would not “tell a lie” regarding the meetings. Khwaja said that he had met the al-Qaeda chief more than a 100 times,“but not after the 9/11 incident.”

Replying to a question,Khawja says he had never stated that Osama had given Rs 500 million to the PML-N chief. “I had not uttered such a statement in the past.”

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A PML-N spokesperson,reacting to the claims,said: “On whose nod these former officials are speaking out.”

The party’s Information Secretary Ahsan Iqbal told ARY News: “There is no importance of the statement.”

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