Somali Man Held Two Months Faces Charges

A Somali man suspected of assisting al Qaeda was held abroad on a U.S. Navy ship for questioning for over two months without being advised of any legal rights, an administration official said.
The man, identified as Ahmed Abdulkadir Warsame, was brought to New York City on July 4 to face charges in a U.S. criminal court.
He appeared in a New York court on Tuesday morning and pleaded not guilty to providing material support to al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula and the Somali group Al Shabaab, prosecutors in Manhattan said on Tuesday.
Warsame was arrested in April by the U.S. military in the Gulf, he was questioned about anti-terrorism “for intelligence purposes for more than two months” before being read his Miranda rights, the prosecutors said in a statement.
Miranda rights entitle suspects to a lawyer and the right to remain silent.
He was questioned by interrogators from the High-Value Detainee Interrogation Group and the U.S. military, according to an administration official.
President Barack Obama’s administration has come under fire by Republicans and even some fellow Democrats over his decision to prosecute some terrorism suspects in criminal courts and not in military courts, where rules for evidence are looser.
In Washington, another senior administration official said Obama’s national security team had unanimously recommended the prosecution of Warsame in a criminal court.
The senior Republican on the Homeland Security Committee, Senator Susan Collins, said she did not agree with this decision.
“A foreign national who fought on behalf of al Shabaab in Somalia – and who was captured by our military overseas – should be tried in a military commission, not a federal civilian court in New York or anywhere else in our country,” she said in a statement.
LATER WAIVED RIGHTS
After his interrogation, a fresh FBI team came in and was permitted to talk with him, at which time he waived his legal rights and continued to talk for several days, said the first official, who declined to be identified because he was not authorized to talk on the record about matters of terrorism.
Warsame arrived in New York City late on July 4 after being formally arrested the previous day, according to a letter from prosecutors to the U.S. court.
Warsame, said to be in his mid-20s, was indicted on nine charges, including providing material support from at least 2007 to April 2011 to Somali militants al Shabaab and al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), two groups designated by Washington as terrorist organizations.
According to the charges, Warsame also worked to broker a weapons deal with AQAP on behalf of al Shabaab.
A joint statement by the Manhattan U.S. Attorney, the FBI and the New York Police Department said he was also charged with “conspiring to teach and demonstrate the making of explosives, possessing firearms and explosives in furtherance of crimes of violence and other violations.”

Reports Say Libyan Oil Chief Defects To Rebels

Libyan oil chief Shukri Ghanem said Wednesday
he had defected and now supports the
rebels, in a
major blow to Libyan leader Moammar
Gadhafi, news reports said, as NATO and its partners decided
to extend their Libya mission for another 90 days.
“In this situation you can no longer work, so I have left
my country and my work to unite myself with the choice of
young Libyans to fight for a democratic country,” the ANSA
news agency quoted Ghanem as saying in Rome.
Ghanem said he had left the regime two weeks ago and
arrived in Rome on Tuesday. The Italian Foreign Ministry
said it had no comment on the report.
For several weeks, Libyan officials had insisted Ghanem,
who as head of the National Oil Corp. serves as Libya’s
oil minister, was on a business trip. As recently as last
week, Libya’s foreign ministry said he would represent the
Gadhafi government at a June 8 OPEC meeting in Vienna.
The defection, the latest in a series, followed the
departure of eight top Libyan army officers, including five
generals, who were presented to reporters in Rome earlier
this week by the Italian foreign ministry days after they
fled Libya.
Another 13 servicemen loyal to Gadhafi, including a colonel
and four commanders, have fled to neighboring Tunisia, the
official Tunisian news agency reported. It was the second
group of military men to defect to Tunisia this week.
The latest group arrived Sunday in the port of Ketf in
southern Tunisia, the news agency TAP said Tuesday.

NATO Extends Libya Air War, Says Kadhafi Will Go

NATO Wednesday extended its Libyan air war
by three months and said the departure
of
strongman Moamer Kadhafi is only a
question of time, as the African Union backed Russian
mediation of the crisis.
Hours after NATO-led aircraft launched new raids on
Tripoli, ambassadors of the military alliance meeting in
Brussels decided to renew the mission for another 90 days to
late September.
“This decision sends a clear message to the Kadhafi
regime. We are determined to continue our operation to
protect the people of Libya,” said NATO Secretary General
Anders Fogh Rasmussen.
“We will sustain our efforts to fulfil the United Nations
mandate” to defend civilians from Kadhafi’s forces, he
said in a statement, adding: “We will keep up the pressure
to see it through.”
NATO, whose current campaign expires on June 27, has
intensified its air raids in recent weeks with daily strikes
on command and control bunkers in Tripoli to prevent Kadhafi
from crushing a revolt that began in mid-February.
Wednesday’s decision would give individual nations time
to prepare their contributions for the next 90 days, a NATO
diplomat said.
“There were very positive signs that nations will extend
with the appropriate number of resources,” the diplomat
said.
The Libyan government said Tuesday that the air war has so
far cost the lives of 718 civilians and wounded more than
4,000.
“Since March 19, and up to May 26, there have been 718
martyrs among civilians and 4,067 wounded — 433 of them
seriously,” government spokesman Mussa Ibrahim said,
citing health ministry numbers which cannot be independently
verified,
Ibrahim said these figures do not include Libyan military
casualties, a toll the defence ministry refuses to divulge.
NATO cast doubt on the Libyan claim.
“We have no indications that that is the case,” NATO
deputy spokeswoman Carmen Romero told AFP, adding the
alliance has no way to verify the claims because it does not
have troops on the ground.
“NATO is conducting its operations to implement the UN
mandate to protect civilians with great care and
precision,” she said. “This is in clear contrast with
the indiscriminate attacks of the Kadhafi regime on his own
people.”
At a news conference in Tripoli, Ibrahim warned the
departure of Libya’s veteran leader, as demanded by NATO
and the G8, would be a “worst case scenario” for the
country.
“If Kadhafi goes, the security valve will disappear,”
he said.
“Kadhafi’s departure would be the worst case scenario
for Libya,” he told reporters, and warned of “civil
war.”
But Rasmusssen told reporters in Brussels Kadhafi’s
departure is only a question of time.

At White House, Obama Presses Republicans On Debt Cap

President Barack Obama pressed
Republicans to back an increase in the
debt
limit on Wednesday during a rare meeting
aimed at ending a standoff that the White House fears could
upset financial markets.
Obama met Republicans from the House of Representatives a
day after they defeated their own bill to raise the debt
limit — a vote staged to strengthen their demand for huge
cuts in federal spending. The deficit is expected to reach
$1.4 trillion this year.
The White House argues the United States would face
“calamitous” consequences — including a return to
recession — if Congress does not raise the $14.3 trillion
cap on government borrowing by August 2.
The Treasury said on Wednesday it was still on track to
exhaust all borrowing capacity by August 2, risking a
possible debt default unless Congress comes to an agreement
over spending.
“(Treasury) Secretary (Timothy Geithner) continues to
urge Congress to avoid the catastrophic economic and market
consequences of a default crisis by raising the statutory
debt limit in a timely manner,” Mary Miller, assistant
secretary for financial markets at Treasury, said in a
statement.
[ For complete coverage of politics and policy, go to
Yahoo! Politics ]
The Treasury Department has been tapping federal employee
pensions and other funds to pay the nation’s bills since
it reached the current debt limit on May 16.
Republicans are skeptical that default is inevitable if
government borrowing grinds to a halt and some even question
the disaster warnings that Geithner has been issuing all
year. They insist that significant spending cuts accompany
any deal on the debt ceiling.
Both sides have raised the stakes in recent days.
After Republicans staged Tuesday’s vote, House Speaker
John Boehner, the top Republican in Congress, released a
letter signed by more than 150 economists saying any
increase in the debt limit must be matched with spending
cuts of equal size.
“An increase in the national debt limit that is not
accompanied by significant spending cuts and budget reforms
to address our government’s spending addiction will harm
private-sector job creation in America,” the letter said.
TAX INCREASES VS MEDICARE CUTS
In talks led by Vice President Joe Biden, Republicans and
Democrats have identified tens of billions of dollars in
possible spending cuts.

Bombers take bin Laden revenge in Pakistan

By Mian Khursheed

U.S. special forces flew in from Afghanistan to find and kill bin Laden at his hideout in a northern Pakistani town on May 2.

Pakistan welcomed the killing of bin Laden as a major step against militancy but was outraged by the secret U.S. raid that got him, saying it was a violation of its sovereignty.

The discovery of bin Laden in the town of Abbottabad, near the country’s top military academy, has, however, deepened suspicion in the United States that Pakistani security forces knew where he was hiding.

Bin Laden’s followers have vowed revenge for his death and the Pakistani Taliban said the Friday attack by two suicide bombers on a paramilitary academy in the northwestern town of Charsadda was their first taste of vengeance.

“There will be more,” militant spokesman Ehsanullah Ehsan said by telephone from an undisclosed location.

The attackers struck as the recruits were going on leave and 65 of them were among the 80 dead. Pools of blood strewn with soldiers caps and shoes lay on the road outside the academy as the wounded, looking dazed with parts of their clothes ripped away by shrapnel, were loaded into trucks.

Shahid Ali, 28, was on his way to his shop when the bombs went off. He tried to help survivors. “A young boy was lying near a wrecked van asked me to take him to hospital. I got help and we got him into a vehicle,” Ali said.

Hours after the bombing, a U.S. drone aircraft fired missiles at a vehicle in the North Waziristan region on the Afghan border, killing five militants, Pakistani security officials said.

It was the fourth drone attack since bin Laden was killed, inflaming another sore issue between Pakistan and the United States. Pakistan officially objects to these attacks, saying they violate its sovereignty. It also says the civilians casualties complicate its efforts to fight militants by gaining the support of local villagers.
The United States says the drone strikes are carried out under an agreement with Pakistan and it has made clear it will go after militants in Pakistan when it finds them.
Pakistan Taliban turn against state
The bomb attack was a grim reminder of the militant threat Pakistan faces even as bin Laden’s discovery 50 km (30 miles) from the capital has revived suspicion of Pakistani double-dealing.

The Pakistan Taliban, close allies of al Qaeda, are fighting to bring down the nuclear-armed state and impose their vision of Islamist rule. They launched their war in earnest in 2007, after security forces cleared militant gunmen from a radical mosque in the capital, killing about 100 people.

Pakistan has long used militants as proxies to oppose the influence of its old rival India, and is widely believed to be helping some factions even while battling others.

It has rejected as absurd suggestions its security agencies might have known where bin Laden was hiding.

The United States has long pressed Pakistan to tackle Afghan Taliban taking shelter in Pakistani enclaves on the border but the chance of greater cooperation with the United States appears to have been dented by the U.S. raid to get bin Laden.

The chairman of Pakistan’s joint chiefs of staff committee, General Khalid Shameem Wynne, has canceled a five-day visit to the United States beginning on May 22.

“He called his U.S. counterpart … and informed him that the visit could not be undertaken under existing circumstances,” a military official told Reuters.

He did not elaborate but the decision to cancel the visit came as the cabinet defense committee said it was reviewing cooperation with the United States on counter-terrorism.

The parameters of such cooperation would be clearly defined “in accordance with Pakistan’s national interests and the aspirations of the people,” the committee said in a statement.

The military and government have also come in for criticism at home, partly for failing to find bin Laden but more for failing to detect or stop the unauthorized U.S. raid to kill him.

Army chief General Ashfaq Kayani will be at a closed-door briefing by military officials to parliament later on Friday.

Some U.S. lawmakers have called for suspending aid to Pakistan because of doubts about its commitment in going after violent Islamists.

But President Barack Obama’s administration has stressed the importance of maintaining cooperation with Pakistan in the interests of battling militancy and bringing stability to neighboring Afghanistan.

Warner Attacks Triesman Over Claims

FIFA vice-president Jack Warner says he “laughed like hell’’ at Lord Triesman’s claims that he asked for money to build an education centre at an estimated cost of £2.5 million.
Warner, president of the CONCACAF federation of countries in north and central American and the Caribbean, told Trinidad newspaper Newsday: “First of all, I laugh like hell because it took those guys from December to now [to say] that I have £2.5million I believe. I never asked anybody for anything.
“When these guys came here, we promised to help. I showed them a place where they can put a playground. They promised to come back but they never did. That’s all. What is painful is that the FA spent £19 million in a bid, 24 persons in the FIFA, one is from England, seven of whom from Europe.
“If the other 16 persons were bad, how come the only vote they got is the Englishman’s vote? How come not even one person from Europe voted for them? And they’re looking for all different reasons. Why don’t they, in a dispassionate way, sit down and ask why not one European voted for them?’’
Warner claimed nobody in FIFA would take Triesman’s claims seriously, pointing out the peer was forced to step down as FA and bid chairman in May last year after repeating rumours that Spain and Russia would bribe referees.
“The important thing is that I think nobody of substance really takes those guys seriously,’’ Warner said. “Triesman was unceremoniously removed. Where is his credibility?
“I hold my head tall because I can stand up and tell the world I never accepted anything. People who know me would be totally dismissive of that nonsense.’’

South African Lesbians Targeted In Rapes, Slayings

They found Noxolo Nogwaza’s body in a drainage ditch choked with trash and high reeds. The lesbian activist had been repeatedly stabbed with broken glass, and beaten so severely with chunks of concrete that her teeth had been knocked out.
The neighborhood where the 24-year-old mother of two was slain once was known as a haven for black gays and lesbians, but activists say her death here late last month highlights an alarming rise in homophobic violence in some of the country’s most impoverished areas.
“If the police and other state officials do not act swiftly, it will only be a matter of time before they have to account for their failure to the family and friends of the next lesbian who is beaten and killed in Kwa-Thema,” Human Rights Watch researcher Dipika Nath said in a statement.
No arrests have been made in Nogwaza’s death, one of dozens that happen each day in a country with high rates of violent crime. Authorities are also investigating whether she had been raped.
In the days leading up to her funeral, friends, family and colleagues held several marches in her honor, traveling from the ditch where her body was found through the streets of the Kwa-Thema neighborhood in this community just east of Johannesburg.
Some union leaders and politicians also have offered support, with one union noting Nogwaza’s children in particular.
“We hope that they will one day manage to see beyond the horror of what has happened, and recognize and be proud of the wonderfully warm and courageous person their mother was,” it said in a statement.
South Africa’s Ministry of Justice announced last week that it wants to open special shelters for people who fear for their lives because of their sexual orientation. But the governing party’s women’s league says the government must go further, and wants lawmakers to classify these attacks as hate crimes.
Same-sex marriage is legal in South Africa and the country has among the most liberal laws on sexual orientation on a continent where many other countries punish gay sex with fines and jail terms. But cultural attitudes don’t always match the progressive constitution approved in 1996 after the end of apartheid.
“We’ve been so confident here in South Africa, thinking the law will protect us,” said Bontle Khalo, a friend of Nogwaza’s who worked with her in a group fighting for the rights of gays and lesbians in Kwa-Thema. “We’re facing the same struggles all over this continent and all over this world.”
South African lesbians say they are particularly vulnerable in a society where conservative attitudes, especially among the black majority, have strong influence on how women are seen and treated. The attacks on lesbians have all taken place in townships — the communities where black South Africans were forced to live under apartheid that remain predominantly black and poor.
The assaults on lesbians have been called “corrective rapes,” and are meant to humiliate and punish women who don’t fit the norm. Some attackers have reportedly said they believed they could “cure” women of being lesbians by raping them, said Vasu Reddy, a researcher at the government’s Human Science Research Council.
Victims are even believed to include a 13-year-old girl who was assaulted in Pretoria last week.
Some 30 attacks have been documented since 2003, and they have steadily increased over the years, Reddy said. But the real number is likely higher because victims can be reluctant to come forward for fear of being stigmatized or blamed, and because the motives of murders aren’t always immediately known or recorded.
The drafters of South Africa’s constitution, with its clauses banning discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, wanted a document that countered the restrictions and inequities of the apartheid era.
Activists have used the charter to push for more in the courts, overturning anti-sodomy laws, and securing guarantees that gay parents have equal child custody and adoption rights. But such success can lead to backlash.

Riots After Uganda Opposition Leader’s Trip Halted


Uganda’s top opposition leader was kicked off a flight from Kenya on Wednesday, prompting riots back home that police quelled with tear gas only a day before the country’s president of 25 years was due to be sworn in for another term.
Kizza Besigye said he was waiting to board a flight when a Kenya Airways official informed him that the plane would not be allowed to land in Uganda with Besigye on it. A government spokesman in Uganda denied that authorities had interfered with his return.
Anti-government marches led by Besigye over the last month have been the most serious unrest in sub-Saharan Africa since protests swept out leaders in Egypt and Tunisia. Human Rights Watch says that Uganda security forces have killed nine people during the protests.
Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni, who first came to power in 1986, has said repeatedly that his government will not fall to protests. He was re-elected in February and his inauguration is set for Thursday.
Besigye said the country’s constitution guarantees him the right to return home.
“Every Ugandan has the right all the time to return to Uganda. So it’s a contradiction that he wants to swear by that constitution tomorrow which he is violating today,” Besigye said. “This is what we are confronting — impunity.”
Besigye, who election officials said finished second in the vote, has been arrested five times while leading protests over rising prices and government corruption. During his last arrest, he was sprayed at point-blank range with tear gas or pepper spray and was temporarily blinded.
He tried to return home Wednesday after seeking medical care in Kenya. Besigye said there were indications the government would allow him to return home in the evening.
Chris Karanja, a Kenya Airways spokesman, said the airline could not take Besigye to Uganda “because of safety reasons.”
“Intelligence reports showed that it was not safe to fly him to Uganda. We cannot share why but our internal intelligence showed that it was not safe for him to board the plane,” Karanja said.
Food and fuel prices have risen sharply in Uganda in the past few months, fueling the anti-government protests. Museveni said he will propose a constitutional amendment so that protesters are jailed for at least six months after arrest, instead of being released on bail the same day.

U.N. Chief Ban Calls For Ceasefire In Libya


U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon called on Wednesday for an “immediate, verifiable
ceasefire” in Libya where rebels are fighting to end Muammar Gaddafi’s 41 years in power.
Ban was speaking in Geneva after talking with Libya’s Prime Minister Al-Baghdadi Ali al-Mahmoudi. There was no immediate direct response from the rebels or government.
Gaddafi’s government has made several ceasefire declarations but has continued its attacks on the besieged western city of Misrata and other rebel-held areas.
“He (Mahmoudi) even suggested the Libyan government was willing to have an immediate ceasefire with a monitoring team to be established by the United Nations and the African Union,” Ban told a news conference.
“But first and foremost there should be an end to the fighting in Misrata and elsewhere. Then we will be able to provide humanitarian assistance and in parallel we can continue our political dialogue,” Ban added.
Rebels said on Tuesday they made gains by driving back Gaddafi’s troops on the eastern and western edges of Misrata and encircling them at the airport.
The rebels also said they had taken the town of Zareek; about 25 km (15 miles) west of Misrata, but no independent verification of their statements was available.
Misrata, besieged by Gaddafi’s forces for eight weeks, is the only major city the rebels hold in the west of the country.
NATO launched missile strikes on Tuesday in the Tripoli area on targets that appeared to include Gaddafi’s compound, witnesses said. NATO said later it carried out a strike against a government command and control post in the capital.
STALEMATE
After three months of revolt linked to this year’s uprisings in other Arab countries, the war has reached a stalemate. Rebels hold Benghazi and other towns in the oil-producing east while the government controls the capital and almost the entire west.
Thousands have been killed in the fighting in the vast country, which has a population of more than six million.
The government says the rebels are armed criminals and al Qaeda militants and that the majority of Libyans support Gaddafi, who has been in power since 1969.
He has not appeared in public since April 30, when a NATO air strike on a house in the capital killed his youngest son and three of his grandchildren.
Rebels had surrounded Gaddafi’s forces at Misrata airport and an air force academy near the southern neighborhood of al Ghiran where the two sides fought fierce battles on Monday, a witness and a rebel spokesman said.
“The plan is to drive out Gaddafi’s forces from the airport and the air force academy where they are now trapped,” rebel spokesman Abdelsalam said by phone from Misrata on Tuesday. “We continue to have success but our weakness is that we can’t hold on to areas we take control of.”
NATO DILEMMA
The proximity of Gaddafi’s forces to civilian areas made it hard for NATO to carry out its mandate of protecting civilians, Brigadier-General Claudio Gabellini, chief operations officer of NATO’s Libya mission, told reporters in Brussels.
NATO had still managed to destroy more than 30 military targets in Misrata since April 29. “Pro-Gaddafi forces have continued to shell the citizens of Misrata with long-range artillery, mortars and rockets, indiscriminately firing high explosive rounds into the city,” said Gabellini.
The Libyan government says NATO’s intervention is an act of colonial aggression by Western powers bent on stealing the country’s oil.
The war has caused misery for tens of thousands forced to flee overland or by boat. Aid agencies say witnesses reported a vessel carrying between 500 and 600 people foundered late last week near Tripoli and that many bodies were seen in the water.
Before that, about 800 people had gone missing since March 25 after trying to escape from Libya, according to the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees. Most were from sub-Saharan Africa.

Failure To Find Bin Laden Not Pakistan’s Alone – Prime Minister


Pakistan’s prime minister defended his nation’s military and intelligence services on Monday and said Pakistan was not solely to blame for the failure to detect Osama bin Laden’s presence in a garrison town close to the capital.
Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani, in his first address to parliament since the covert U.S. raid that killed the al-Qaida chief a week ago, lashed out at allegations Pakistan knew where bin Laden was hiding, though he offered no details on what the country did know about his location. He also warned the U.S. that any unilateral raids in the future would be met with “full force.”
“It is disingenuous for anyone to blame Pakistan or state institutions of Pakistan, including the ISI and the armed forces, for being in cahoots with al-Qaida,” Gilani said. “Elimination of Osama bin Laden, who launched waves after waves of terrorists attacks against innocent Pakistanis, is indeed justice done.”
New signs were emerging of Pakistan’s anger over the unilateral action taken by the U.S. in sending Navy SEALs into the country from Afghanistan in helicopters with radar-evading technology. In apparent retaliation, Pakistani media have reported what they said was the name of the CIA station chief in Islamabad in a possible leak from authorities seeking to damage covert American activity in the country.
In his remarks to lawmakers, Gilani acknowledged his nation’s failure to track bin Laden but said the failure wasn’t Pakistan’s alone.
“Yes, there has been an intelligence failure,” Gilani said. “It is not only ours but of all the intelligence agencies of the world.”
U.S. officials have said they see no evidence that anyone in the upper echelons of Pakistan’s military and intelligence establishment was complicit in hiding bin Laden. But they still have serious questions about how the al-Qaida chief was able to hole up for up to six years in the army town of Abbottabad, just 35 miles (55 kilometers) from the capital, Islamabad.
President Barack Obama said the U.S. believes bin Laden must have had a support network inside Pakistan.
“But we don’t know who or what that support network was,” Obama said in an interview broadcast Sunday on CBS’ “60 Minutes.” “We don’t know whether there might have been some people inside of government, people outside of government, and that’s something that we have to investigate, and more importantly, the Pakistani government has to investigate.”
American officials have said they didn’t inform Pakistan in advance of the raid out of fear bin Laden could be tipped off.
Gilani warned the U.S., which has carried out numerous drone strikes on militant targets along Pakistan’s border with Afghanistan, not to try a similar covert raid in the future, saying “unilateralism runs the inherent risk of serious consequences.”
“Pakistan reserves the right to retaliate with full force,” Gilani said. “No one should underestimate the resolve and capability of our nation and armed forces to defend our sacred homeland.”
The Pakistani military scrambled F-16 fighters and sent forces to bin Laden’s compound as soon as they were aware of the raid, Gilani said. Even though they were unable to interdict U.S. forces before they were on their way back to Afghanistan, he expressed confidence in their performance.
He said the army will conduct an inquiry into the raid and military officials will brief parliament later in May.
Pakistan is a key but sometimes unpredictable partner with Washington in combatting Islamic militants and has been an ally in the war against Taliban insurgents in both Pakistan and Afghanistan. In return, the U.S. provides the country with billions of dollars in aid.
Gilani said that relationship remained robust.
“Pakistan attaches high importance to its relations with the U.S.,” Gilani said. “Our communications at the official and diplomatic levels with the U.S., during this phase, have been good, productive and straight forward.”
But new questions about the relationship arose with the publication in Pakistani media of what they said is the name of the top CIA operative in the country — the second such potential outing of a sensitive covert operative in six months.
The Associated Press has learned that the name being reported is misspelled. Still, the publication of any alleged identity of the U.S. spy agency’s top official in this country could be pushback from Pakistan’s powerful military and Inter-Services Intelligence agency in retaliation for the American raid.
On Friday, the private TV channel ARY broadcast what it said was the current CIA station chief’s name. The Nation, a right-wing newspaper, picked up the story Saturday.
ARY’s news director, Mazhar Abbas, said the television station’s reporter gleaned the name from a source. He defended the broadcast, saying it was “based on fact” and rejected suggestions the name was leaked to the television channel by an official with a motive.
The AP is not publishing the station chief’s name because he is undercover and his identity is classified.
A U.S. official, speaking on condition of anonymity due to the sensitivity of discussing CIA personnel issues, told the AP that there are no plans to remove the station chief from Pakistan.
A spokesman for Pakistani intelligence declined to comment.
Asad Munir, a former intelligence chief with responsibility for Pakistan’s militant-populated tribal areas, said very few people know the name of the CIA station chief in Islamabad. But he said that releasing it would not necessarily jeopardize the American’s safety.

Pakistan Pays U.S. Lobbyists To Deny It Helped Bin Laden


Pakistan’s Washington lobbyists have launched an intense campaign on Capitol Hill to counter accusations that Islamabad was complicit in giving refuge to Osama bin Laden.
Alarmed by lawmakers’ demands to cut off billions of dollars of U.S. aid after bin Laden was found living in a Pakistani safe house for six years, President Asif Ali Zardari has ordered a full-court press to quell mounting accusations that it helped the al Qaeda leader avoid capture.
Mark Siegel, a partner in the Washington lobbying firm of Locke Lord Strategies — which is paid $75,000 a month by the Pakistani government — told Reuters on Thursday he had spoken twice to Zardari since U.S. special forces killed bin Laden on Sunday, and “countless” times to the Pakistani ambassador in Washington.
“They are certainly concerned,” Siegel said, adding that suggestions the Pakistani government knew about bin Laden’s whereabouts was nothing more than speculation.
Referring to a statement by President Barack Obama’s counterterrorism adviser, John Brennan, that there must have been a support system for bin Laden inside Pakistan, Siegel said: “There is no proof that a support system was government-based.”
There is much at stake for Pakistan as many lawmakers question how bin Laden could have lived in a large fortified compound close to a Pakistani military base for so long.
Some members of Congress are now demanding that nearly $3 billion in annual aid for Pakistan, included in Obama’s 2012 budget, be blocked until the Zardari administration explains how bin Laden lived untouched just 30 miles outside Islamabad, the Pakistani capital. Pakistan has received over $20 billion in U.S. aid since the September 11, 2001, attacks.
Patrick Leahy, the Democratic chairman of the Senate subcommittee that allocates foreign aid, said on Thursday he wants a complete review of U.S. aid to Pakistan.
Leahy said he was certain that some Pakistani military and intelligence officials knew that bin Laden was hiding so close to Islamabad.
“It’s impossible for them not to have some idea he was there,” Leahy told Vermont Public Radio.
But Siegel, referring to claims by the Afghan government that Pakistan must have known bin Laden’s whereabouts, said: “Must have known doesn’t mean knew.”
Siegel’s firm was retained by the Zardari government in 2008 and has earned nearly $2 million in fees since then, according to Justice Department records. Siegel said his firm is paid $900,000 a year by Pakistan.