Tue June 21, 2011
Developing: Pakistani Brigadier Suspected Of Ties To 'Banned' Group
The BBC's Urdu-language service is reporting, and Agence France Presse says it has confirmed, that a senior officer in the Pakistani army has been taken into custody and is suspected of having ties to "a banned organization."
So far, there's no word on what organization Brigadier Ali Khan is accused of having links to. But the BBC says "Islamic militants" are allegedly involved.
Since May 2, when U.S. commandos killed Osama bin Laden at his compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan, there have been reports that Pakistani authorities arrested or detained some of the informants who helped the CIA track down the al-Qaida leader.
And some U.S. officials, including outgoing Defense Secretary Robert Gates, have said that "somebody" in Pakistan had to know that bin Laden was in the country.
This is the first prominent report since bin Laden's death of a high-ranking Pakistani military official being linked to extremists.
Update at 8:40 a.m. ET. The BBC now has an English-language report, which begins with this:
"A senior officer serving in Pakistan's army has been detained for alleged contacts with a banned militant group. Pakistan's military spokesman confirmed to the BBC that Brigadier Ali Khan was being interrogated by the country's military intelligence unit. Pakistan has banned a number of groups in recent years for supporting militancy and encouraging extremism."