The Washington Post reports that Osama bin Laden’s location has been determined. He and his aide Ayman Zawahiri are in the village of Maidan in Pakistan province of North Waziristan, commander from Afghan intelligence Hazrat Uddin in the Host province told an American newspaper.
Uddin said that, according to available information, bin Laden and Zawahiri were seen in the village yesterday. In addition, at least a week ago, bin Laden was seen in Peshawar. The US HQ in Afghanistan has not confirmed the information. The Afghani government reported that 1,200 US and British commandos have landed on the Afghan – Pakistani border, in Gergerai, three days ago. They were involved in searching for bin Laden and Zawahiri. The mountainous region of Gergerai is controlled by Pastun tribes living on both sides of the border.
It is hard to say whether the information is reliable. Indeed, information about bin Laden’s location has recently become very frequent; almost every week new sightings appear. It is more likely that, this time, it is wishful thinking again and not reality. None of the previous reports of bin Laden’s location have been confirmed.
On the other hand, bin Laden and his followers may be hiding only in the regions slightly controlled or uncontrolled by the central authorities of Afghanistan and Pakistan. To tell the truth, there are many regions of this kind in both states. Therefore, the number one terrorist may be in any of them. Probably, the US HQ in Afghanistan prefers to abstain from commenting on any searching operations for the success of the operation. However, if bin Laden was actually in the village, he must have already escaped by now.
In any case, the search for Osama bin Laden will go on until final victory. Nobody is sure how much time and effort this is going to take. It is highly probable that it will take several years. Time will tell whether the operation in Gergerai will be a success.
Oleg Artyukov PRAVDA.Ru
Translated by Maria Gousseva
Read the original in Russian: http://pravda.ru/main/2002/04/29/40464.html