Bin Laden To Face Trial In Pakistan

If Osama bin Laden and the Taliban high-ranking officials commit an unauthorised entry into Pakistan, they will be arrested and tried. The same destiny awaits Pakistani "volunteers" who fought with the Taliban movement. This statement was made on Tuesday by Major-General Rashid Kureshi, the Press Secretary of Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf, at a briefing in Islamabad. Kureshi said that Pakistani authorities had no information concerning the present location of Osama bin Laden adding that neither him nor any of al-Qaeda leaders were in Pakistan. Commenting on whether bin Laden will be tried in Pakistan or extradited to the United Stated or the UN, Kureshi said that, usually, terrorists faced trial in the country where they had been arrested. He added that the UN had not decided yet where and how Osama bin Laden would be tried. At the same time, Kureshi emphasised that all Pakistani mujaheddin who had been fighting for the Taliban cause, would also be tried on their returning homeland. According to him, Pakistani authorities have no exact data concerning how many Pakistanis fought in Afghanistan and how many Pakistani citizens were killed or became POW's. Speaking about Pervez Musharraf's interview broadcast yesterday by the state television, where the President spoke about certain contacts with the Northern Alliance, Aziz Han, the Press Secretary of the Pakistani Foreign Ministry who also participated in the briefing, stated that "such contacts do take place, but it doesn't mean there were meetings or negotiations." Neither the visit by a Pakistani delegation to Kabul, nor the one by Northern Alliance representatives to Pakistan are currently on the agenda. Han also said that no Pakistani delegation had been sent to Dubai for negotiations with Afghan President Burhanuddin Rabbani.

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