News / Asia

Gates: No Evidence that Pakistan Knew About bin Laden

Secretary of Defense Robert Gates (l) and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Adm. Mike Mullen speak at the Pentagon, May 18, 2011
Secretary of Defense Robert Gates (l) and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Adm. Mike Mullen speak at the Pentagon, May 18, 2011
Sean Maroney

U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates says he has not seen any evidence that suggests top Pakistani officials knew that al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden was hiding in their country.  His comments come as U.S. lawmakers debate reevaluating Washington’s relationship with Islamabad following the killing of bin Laden by U.S. Navy Seals near the Pakistani capital.  

U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates says that so far, there has not been any evidence that top Pakistani officials knew the world’s most wanted man, Osama bin Laden, was hiding in their country.

“I’ve seen no evidence at all that the senior leadership knew," said Gates. "In fact, I’ve seen some evidence to the contrary.  And we have no evidence yet with respect to anybody else.”

However, he said he still believes somebody in Pakistan probably knew about bin Laden.

It is this unknown factor that has some lawmakers in Congress leery of continuing to provide billions of dollars in aid to Pakistan.

Speaking with reporters Wednesday at the Pentagon, Gates said he understood the lawmakers’ frustration, but he does not think U.S. aid to Pakistan should end.

He said he believes Pakistanis have suffered enough with the realization that U.S. special forces were able to mount a successful, covert raid deep into their territory to get bin Laden.

“If I were in Pakistani shoes, I would say I’ve already paid a price," he said. "I’ve been humiliated.  I’ve been shown that the Americans can come in here and do this with impunity.”

Gates said the United States and Pakistan now should move forward on their common interests.

Speaking alongside Gates, U.S. Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Admiral Mike Mullen, said the United States still is working to reestablish trust with the Pakistanis after largely abandoning their country and the region following the Soviet withdrawal from Afghanistan in 1989.

Mullen says Pakistan is too important in the current fight against terrorism to marginalize.

“I think the region continues to be critical, and our relationship continues to be critical," said Mullen. "I think it would be a really significantly negative outcome if the relationship got broken.”

He said it is this partnership that has helped Islamabad tackle militants based in the country’s northwest who kill Pakistani civilians and threaten regional stability.

Pakistan is slated to receive billions more in aid from Washington in the coming years.  It is the third-largest recipient of U.S. security aid and reimbursements after Afghanistan and Israel.

You May Like

China Investigates Former Powerful Security Chief

Former security chief and member of Politburo Standing Committee, Zhou Yongkang, under investigation for suspected 'serious disciplinary violation' More

India, US Look to Reset Ties During Kerry Visit

This week's talks will be first high level interaction between two countries since Prime Minister Narendra Modi took charge More

Video Young African Leadership Program Renamed to Honor Mandela

YALI program, launched by President Obama in 2010, aims to build skills in business, entrepreneurship, public management and civic leadership More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Vietnamese Staging Chinese Product Boycott After Oil Rig Spati
X
Reasey Poch
July 28, 2014 7:18 PM
China recently pulled an oil rig from an area of the disputed South China Sea that Vietnam also claims. Despite the action, the incident has had a lingering effect on consumers in Vietnam. VOA's Reasey Poch reports from Hanoi on an effort to boycott Chinese products.
Video

Video Vietnamese Staging Chinese Product Boycott After Oil Rig Spat

China recently pulled an oil rig from an area of the disputed South China Sea that Vietnam also claims. Despite the action, the incident has had a lingering effect on consumers in Vietnam. VOA's Reasey Poch reports from Hanoi on an effort to boycott Chinese products.
Video

Video ESA Spacecraft to Land on a Comet

After a long flight through deep space, a European Space Agency probe is finally approaching its target -- a comet millions of kilometers away from earth. Scientists say the mission may lead to some startling discoveries about the origins of the water on earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Young Africans Arrive in US for Leadership Program

President Barack Obama's Young African Leadership Initiative has brought hundreds of young Africans to the United States for a six-week program aimed at building their knowledge and skills in fields such as public administration and business. Out of the 50,000 young Africans who applied for the program, just one percent was accepted. VOA's Laurel Bowman caught up with some of those who made the cut and has this report.
Video

Video In Honduras, Amnesty Rumors Fuel US Migration Surges

False rumors in Central America are fueling the current surge of undocumented young people being apprehended at the U.S. border. The inaccurate claims suggest the U.S. will give amnesty to young migrants from the region. As VOA's Brian Padden reports from Honduras, these rumors trace back to President Obama's 2012 executive order to halt deportations for some young undocumented immigrants already living in the United States.
Video

Video Students in Business for Themselves

They're only high school students, but they are making accessories for shoes, fabricating backpacks and doing product photography - all through their own businesses. It's the result of a partnership between a non-profit organization that teaches entrepreneurship and their schools. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan and Deyane Moses met the budding entrepreneurs near Los Angeles.
Video

Video Astronauts Train in Underwater Lab

In the world’s only underwater laboratory, four U.S. astronauts train for a planned visit to an asteroid. The lab - called Aquarius- is located five kilometers off Key Largo, in southern Florida. Living in close quarters and making excursions only into the surrounding ocean, they try to simulate the daily routine of a crew that will someday travel to collect samples of a rock orbiting far away from earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.

AppleAndroid