Thursday, May 31, 2012

Militants deny link to Pakistani doctor as they proclaim "He is a traitor, an enemy of Islam, a greedy blackmailer."

(Reuters) - Deepening the mystery in a case that is straining Islamabad's relations with Washington, a Pakistani militant group said on Thursday it never had ties to a doctor who helped the CIA find Osama bin Laden, even though he was jailed for aiding them.

Last week, after Dr Shakil Afridi was convicted by a court in the Khyber tribal region near the Afghan border, Pakistani officials said the decision was based on treason charges for helping the CIA and conspiring against the state.

After that announcement rankled U.S. officials, Pakistan then said the doctor had a history of womanizing, sexual harassment and assault and stealing, allegations that could not be independently confirmed.

A court document released on Wednesday stated that Afridi was imprisoned for 33 years for supporting the Lashkar-e-Islam (LI) militant group.

"There is no truth to this. We want to get him ourselves. If we get hold of him, we are going to punish him according to sharia law," Abdul Rasheed, an LI commander, told Reuters.

"He is a traitor, an enemy of Islam, a greedy blackmailer." Read More