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Pakistani backs off Musharraf claims

Feb. 15, 2012 at 11:42 AM
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ISLAMABAD, Pakistan, Feb. 15 (UPI) -- A former Pakistani intelligence chief said he was misquoted that ex-Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf knew Osama bin Laden was hiding in Abbottabad.

Retired Gen. Ziauddin Khwaja, who once led Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence, said Musharraf knew of bin Laden's whereabouts and that the al-Qaida founder's compound was built to order by another Pakistani intelligence officer, The Daily Beast reported Tuesday.

However, Khwaja told Pakistan's Geo News Wednesday that he was misquoted in the article. He did not elaborate.

U.S. Navy SEALs raided bin Laden's compound in Abbottabad, less than a mile from the country's national military academy, in May 2011 and killed him.

Khwaja was made head of the intelligence agency by former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif but was taken into custody after Musharraf led a coup that deposed the Sharif government, Press Trust of India reported. Khwaja spent two years in solitary confinement, was discharged from the army and saw his property confiscated.

The man The Daily Beast said Khwaja accused of overseeing bin Laden's compound, Brig. Jen Ijaz Shah, was named head of a rival intelligence institution by Musharraf.

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