Pakistan should explain Bin Laden’s presence in Abbottabad: Munter

Published: May 11, 2011
US ambassador justifies American operations on Pakistans soil saying drone attacks were a "collective responsibility".

US ambassador justifies American operations on Pakistans soil saying drone attacks were a "collective responsibility".


US Ambassador Cameron Munter has justified American operations on Pakistan’s soil saying that the drone attacks were a “collective responsibility”. Islamabad says that the missile attacks by US pilot-less aircraft in the tribal regions are counter-productive and stoke anti-Americanism in the region.

“We are fighting your enemies. Terrorism is the main issue confronting your country and your government agrees with us,” sources quoted Ambassador Munter as saying during a visit to the University of Sindh in Jamshoro.

Pakistan-US relations have strained since the May 2 US special forces’ operation in Abbottabad that had killed Osama bin Laden.

The al Qaeda kingpin’s discovery in Abbottabad has deepened US suspicion that Pakistan’s top spy agency may have had ties with him, or that some of its agents did. And on  Tuesday Ambassador Munter sought an explanation for Bin Laden’s presence on Pakistan’s soil.

However, he was optimistic that the ongoing strains would not affect the overall diplomatic relations between the two countries. “Despite the difficulties we have had in recent days, we are going to make it because we believe that there are a lot of things in common,” he said.

Pakistan had fought the US proxy war in Afghanistan in the 1980s against the Soviet forces. And after the defeat of the Soviet forces, Washington walked away from the region, leaving Pakistan alone to deal with the aftermath.

Ambassador Munter acknowledged that a break in US-Pakistan relations after the end of Cold War was a blunder. “The same mistake ‘shall’ not be repeated again,” he added.

Earlier at an interactive session on ‘Higher Education: US Aid to Pakistan’, the ambassador said that the future of US-Pakistan relations should be guided by “reaching out” to people who cooperate. Faculty and students shared their views with the US envoy.

“Instead of offering scholarships to a select group of students, campuses and visiting faculty can provide higher education opportunities to a vast number of students in Pakistan,” one teacher suggested. It makes more sense to open campuses for US universities and encourage lecture visits by American faculty.

Indeed, SU Vice Chancellor Prof Dr Nazir Mughal expressed his unhappiness with the travel warnings for Pakistan issued by the State Department. “We have signed MoUs with many US universities but the expected exchange of faculty and students is not happening,” he said, requesting the ambassador to do away with such warnings in the interest of education.

When a student complained of complications when it came to “religious names” when visas were processed, Munter cited security concerns saying, “The US State Department’s computer programme is tough on certain things, therefore, proper vetting of applicants is necessary”.

Published in The Express Tribune, May 11th, 2011.

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Reader Comments (24)

  • Nageen
    May 11, 2011 - 9:15AM

    Did anyone sought explanation when the false claim of Iraq having chemical weapons was proved false?
    Munter, please…….justify the Iraq operation first before telling us you are fighting our enemy. Don’t try to complicate things….. drones are inhuman…why dont you strike it all around the world because in the past TTP supporting people have been found in UK and other countries.
    3900 civilians just for 265 terrorist….what a joke that is.
    The total count of 911 deaths ins 3000….You have far exceeded that number so please stop now!
    Your anger isn’t letting you think clearly or is it some kind of strategy.
    And yes, drone attacks has fueled anti-American sentiment in Asia.
    India, China, Pakistan and other countries all think DRONE IS INHUMAN!Recommend

  • RizwanTKhan
    May 11, 2011 - 9:56AM

    Curb the biggest terror organization, the CIA. And the whole world will go into peace.Recommend

  • Aurangzeb Rao
    May 11, 2011 - 10:03AM

    Let me explain…. As per our awesome intelligence, you caught him in Afghanistan decided to kill him in Pakistan.Recommend

  • dextor
    May 11, 2011 - 10:14AM

    Pakistan should also explain your presence here….but u know nobody could do this….our puppet govt does not have powers….And one more thing if you ask them to say its Pakistans fault then they will say….they are obedient not to you but for dollars….Recommend

  • Asim+Ali
    May 11, 2011 - 10:32AM

    And will you explain the death of millions of Iraqis in search of WMDs which were never there in the first place? Do check the skeletons in your own closet before you preach us. We admit our failure. How can you possibly explain the genocide in Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya? Recommend

  • Kazmis
    May 11, 2011 - 10:34AM

    I would like to ask Honorable Ambassador Munter, it is a universal policy that when make a deal you see the background of the other party, what is his character is whether he comes from a criminal background or he is sold in Dollars, Why American deal with Pakistani criminal background rulers (NRO background). General Musharraf was also having dark background, he broke his oath taken in the office,extended his term of services for which he was not authorized, always played double Game with USA. Should we take an impression that USA helpless except to deal dual character people. USA is a great and mighty country, can not it play a straight policy which can not be objected from any quarter. Whole world like to go to USA, but Americans seems unhappy in their own country and running here and there supporting criminal people.Recommend

  • SK
    May 11, 2011 - 10:35AM

    useless to comment on this anymore- only exception is this changes position of US- its not ‘US’ enemies which US is fighting as per Mr. Munter, he says (verbatim), “it your enemies we are fighting”. Now its Pakistan enemies and US is just helping eradicate…… what a farcical and Hippocratic attitude that isRecommend

  • Agha
    May 11, 2011 - 10:36AM

    Well done Mr.Ambassdor same traditional comments that American have since 9/11. Can you eloborate following queries with actual facts & figures:

    1) With bulk of Technology and resources, How is possitble that you were unable to capture Osama from last 10 Years?

    2) What prove you have that Osama was killed in Abottabad or he is still or died couple of years ago?

    3) Why not share this information with Pakistan Government before this attack?

    4) What is your plan to remove your forces from Afghanistan because terrorist activites off with end of Osama?

    Other more questions that is hide from the world.

  • fahd
    May 11, 2011 - 10:49AM

    Explain Osama in Abbotabad? How about you explainig us your find in Abbotabad to start with. A picture of osama’s corpse may be? Any other proof your Navy SEALS didnt mistake Osama the Goat from the real thing? No matter what you do or say to hide complicity, we Pakistanis wont subscribe to the ‘Prince Osama bin Abbotabad’ fantasy. & how about you explaining Osama in Washington. may be that will help us all. Recommend

  • Deep Thinker
    May 11, 2011 - 10:56AM

    The US can keep asking this question until Rapture. Pakistan cannot answer this one for obvious reasons. They’ll be implicating themselves if they speak the truth. The US will have to do what it has to do. The 26/11 trial in Chicago will be more revealing on this subject with the ISI already included in the chargesheet. Recommend

  • Khalid Rahim
    May 11, 2011 - 11:16AM

    Close to the tenth anniversary of September 11/2001 we will receive another shock at the hands of this Government from either Malakand or Hazara division the same Navy Seal Team will extract Zahwehri and his deputy. But they will be taken alive and they
    will tell the world that we were protecting them? The World (American Public) will believe in
    the story. We were taken for a ”Ride” and we will continue to be taken until the saddle breaks into several small
    pieces, each picked up by the rider and his mentor.Recommend

  • Deep Thinker
    May 11, 2011 - 11:24AM

    Because Pakistan’s ISI and the military were hiding him. Thanks to agents like Raymond Davis, Osama could eventually be punished. Responsible nations, as a rule, don’t support terrorists.Recommend

  • parvez
    May 11, 2011 - 11:31AM

    We should look him in the eye and say ‘ First prove he was OBL, show us the body. ‘ That would put the cat out amongst the pigeons.Recommend

  • True Indian
    May 11, 2011 - 11:45AM

    Pakistan answer : We hide OBL to get maximum dollar from America and to destroy their economy .

    OBL is our strategic weapon. We train them and send them to fight with our enemy and than in return we got billion dollar gift. This called real businessman.

    While doing this business ,if some innocent common man died them we called sacrifice and but in business everything fair.but at the end we are making good money. Recommend

  • I write U read
    May 11, 2011 - 11:46AM

    @ Deep thinker …. there is little evidence that OBL has been killed…did you see any video or body? The missing of Hamza bin laden has raised questions too.
    If we want to start celebrating on speeches then its a different thing but I guess now media has advanced and a little more evidence will not harm.Recommend

  • Mirza
    May 11, 2011 - 12:09PM

    The beggars and liars cannot be the choosers.

    Pakistan army cannot get away by showing ignorance and incompetence. There is accountability in the US, if not in Pakistan. Recommend

  • Sameer K.
    May 11, 2011 - 12:11PM

    OBL as you call him is dead. Get over it.

    America is like a shrewed businessman. He would first see her own interest and cares a damn about anyone else.

    Pakistan, if it ever wishes to survive this chaos, should see its interest first. FACT: ass h*s blowing up innocent Pakistani people cannot be friends of the country.

    Pakistan should wipe out terrorists, that are carefully cultivated to fight India. (As army to army Pakistan is no match for the bigger country. Sorry to burst your bubble but true.)

    Bottom line:
    Pakistanis grow up.
    Stop those dumb conspiracy theories. That only confirms stupidity.
    Support government not terrorists.
    Please for heaven’s sake don’t go out shouting death to America, long live OBL. Recommend

  • Deep Thinker
    May 11, 2011 - 12:22PM

    @I write U read:
    OBL’s youngest wife made a statement to Pakistanis the US Seals killed Osama after shooting her in the leg. Look, for detractors, any proof is insufficient. You can believe what you want to believe. Recommend

  • I write U read
    May 11, 2011 - 1:32PM

    @Deep Thinker: I hope you know she is in custody and she hasnt made this statement on any public media? Instead, we got to hear of it from the agencies! Read in between the lines dude. Like OBL’s dead body was never shown, his wife was never shown making a statement…..Lack of transparency is raising doubts!Recommend

  • Amina
    May 11, 2011 - 2:22PM

    Rather, America should explain why Bin Laden was found in Abbottabad, minus the cover up story they are selling the world and their own people. Making a scapegoat of an ally is very big mistake and will not end your problems.Recommend

  • hassan
    May 11, 2011 - 2:51PM


    — 5. Where are the videos of Osama which are not fake?

    –6. Why the US has not released the Mitochondria Samples of Osama ??

    — 7. Where is the death certificate of Osama?

    I request others to add their own questions !!Recommend

  • Deep Thinker
    May 11, 2011 - 3:03PM

    Who cares if the likes of you believe it or not? I am sure you guys will interview him on your TV soon enough.Recommend

  • I write U read
    May 11, 2011 - 3:36PM

    @ hassan…I second that list of questions.
    If Pakistan has to explain his presence in Abottabad there are a lot more things that America should explain before proceeding further. Kerry should come prepared with answers and not with the statement (that he profusely made at RD’s time “I am not here to discuss this”)Recommend

  • Sameer K.
    May 12, 2011 - 8:07PM

    Pakistanis should not be blamed for their conspiracy theories and contradictory statements.

    The army and the politicians in Pakistan hav brainwashed the public for so long that they doubt everything that goes against their preconceived notions.

    Here are some examples of ISI, Army and hence common Pakistan’s conspiracy theories/defence mechanisms:

    9/11: America conspired the attack on itself, wrongly accusing OBL

    Mumbai Attacks: Indian administration orchestrated the attacks on itself to defame Pakistan

    OBL killed: He is alive, America is lying.

    Drone attacks on Pakistan by US: America wants to rule over us because of our minerals (fact is Pakistan does not even have 5% of minerals compared to smaller African countries)

    1971 surrender to India in a war: cease-fire had been perfidiously converted to surrender (hilarious it may sound but this is on official website of Pakistan’s army

    So the thing is: the common man of Pakistan is fed lies and exploited by its army and elite through all these years.

    You cannot expect them to think logically.


    Patience by world community in dealing with the country.

    Pressurise the country (diplomatically) to stop supporting terrorists in any way

    India tries to be little magnanimous, try to arrive at some temporary solution at Kashmir first. If it works then move towards permanent oneRecommend

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