Report: Kabul Agrees to Extradite Bin Laden to Saudi Arabia
The Taliban movement in Afghanistan has agreed to extradite Saudi dissident Osama bin Laden to Saudi Arabia for trial on charges of terrorism, reported the Pakistani Dawn online newspaper Monday, quoting Pakistani sources as saying.
The offer to extradite Bin Laden was made by Afghan supreme ruler Mulla Mohammad Omar to Pakistan’s interior minister, Moinuddin Haider, during his recent visit to Afghanistan, said the report.
Haider had met the Afghan ruler in Kandahar to request the Taliban government to hand over Pakistani nationals who had taken refuge in the war-torn country to escape justice, said the online paper.
A Pakistani source told the paper that the extradition was not raised by Pakistan.
"We never raised the Osama issue. It was raised only by Mulla Omar during the talks," the source said.
The source said Mulla Omar had told the Pakistan side that if Saudi Arabia was not willing to accept Bin Laden, then Kabul will shift the Saudi dissident to "another Muslim country."
A diplomat told Dawn that the country could be the UAE.
He said that a visit by Emirati Crown Prince to Pakistan next Friday “will focus on this issue.”
UAE, Saudi Arabia and Pakistan are the only three countries that recognize the Taliban movement.
The wealthy Saudi dissident has been indicted to stand trial for his alleged role in the twin US embassy bombings in East Africa in 1998 which killed more than 220 people.
He is living in Afghanistan as a "guest" of the fundamentalist Taliban, who have consistently refused to extradite him despite UN aviation, political and diplomatic sanctions, said AFP.
Taliban officials were not immediately available for comment on the Dawn article, when contacted by the agency.
Earlier this month, the Taliban raised the prospect of a "fourth proposal" with the United States to resolve their tug-of-war over bin Laden.
"We call upon the United States not to close the doors to understanding. We are considering to work out a fourth proposal on the issue of Osama bin Laden," Foreign Minister Wakil Ahmad Mutawakel told AFP.
The Taliban have made three offers to resolve the dispute -- to try bin Laden in an Afghan court, to try him before a panel of Islamic clerics from overseas, or to keep him under the surveillance of the Organization of the Islamic Conference, said the agency.
Mutawakel said the latest proposal had not yet been chalked out and refused to give details – Albawaba.com
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