War on Terror

CIA Informants Arrested in Pakistan; Gave bin Laden Info

| by Mark Berman Opposing Views

Five CIA informants who gave the United States information leading up to the raid that killed Osama bin Laden have been arrested in Pakistan, according to a report in The New York Times

The Times said one of those detained is a major in the Pakistan army. However, the Pakistani military denies that. 

"There is no truth in NYT story with regards to involvement and arrest of army major in connection with the OBL (Osama bin Laden) incident," military spokesman Major-General Athar Abbas said in a statement, according to a Reuters report.

But a senior Pakistani security official admitted some people were detained in connection with the Abbottabad raid and they were still being investigated. Asked whether they were CIA informants, he said, "Investigations are under way and after completion of investigation one can say which category they belonged to."

The Times reported that many in Washington see the arrests as yet another sign of the rift between U.S. and Pakistani when it comes to fighting terrorism.

The U.S. did not tell the Pakistani government about the May 2 raid, embarrassing its leaders. The U.S. suspects some in the government are sympathetic to al-Qaeda, and may have tipped off bin Laden had they known.  

The CIA said it will continue to work with Pakistan.

"We have a strong relationship with our Pakistani counterparts and work through issues when they arise," CIA spokesman Marie Harf told the newspaper. "It's a crucial partnership, and we will continue to work together in the fight against Al Qaeda and other terrorist groups who threaten our country and theirs."