SLAMABAD: Terrorist mastermind Osama Bin Laden managed to
escape hours before a joint team of FBI and Pakistan commandos
raided an al-Qaeda hideout in Faisalabad in Punjab province on March
28, which resulted in the capture of his lieutenant Abu Zubaydah, a
media report said Monday.
Laden stayed for three days in
Faisalabad and was able to slip out of the town barely a few hours
before the FBI conducted a surprise raid, Pakistan daily The
Zubaydah was critically injured
when he and other al-Qaeda militants tried to resist the raiding
American media teams that arrived late were tipped
off that Laden had been present at the scene, the daily said. Even
the local police and Pakistani authorities were kept completely in
the dark about the true target of the raids.
arrangements were made to conduct the surprise raid, the daily said
adding the al-Qaeda hideout was tracked by sophisticated FBI
technology which traced cellular phone transmissions through
Vigilance reports had suggested that the 'target'
was staying in a rented house for three days before the raid.
Once the hideout was traced, FBI high-ups in Islamabad
accompanied by crack airborne commandos and marine contingents
secretly landed at the Faisalabad airport from Lahore in the night
and proceeded towards the hideout, the daily said.
inmates of rented house came to know of the raid only when the whole
area was cordoned off and the commandos and Elite Force jawans
jumped over the walls, it said adding that the operation was over
after a brief fire fight.
Zubaydah received three bullets
and was critically injured on chest, arm and leg. He and his
companions were overpowered and taken into custody, the daily said.
Zubaydah's true identity came to known quite some time time
after his arrest during interrogation of his companions.
prime target, Osama Bin Laden, had however moved out only a few
hours earlier as part of his strategy not to stay for a long time at
any place. Related links Pak
helped Osama ally flee: Paper