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Conspiracy theories are becoming conversation in the Pakistani town where Osama bin Laden was killed. Residents from Abbottabad say they’re skeptical bin Laden was killed there…after US President Barack Obama decided not to release pictures of the dead al Qaeda leader.
The Obama administration had been debating whether or not to release the pictures. Officials finally said on Wednesday they would not.
But for some in Abbottabad, this decision is proof that bin Laden was not killed in their town.
[Mehraban Ali, Newspaper Vendor]:
"He was their greatest enemy and they did not publish his picture. This is not possible. An ordinary man dies in an accident and his picture is splashed in newspapers four or five times saying so-and-so died in such-and-such accident. He was the greatest catch in their eyes."
In Pakistan, the debate over whether bin Laden was dead, or if he had really been living in Abbottabad, was slowly evolving into a debate focusing on the government's involvement, or the lack of involvement, in the operation.
A leading Pakistani newspaper said government is facing a national embarrassment as officials must explain how the world's most-wanted man was able to live in a suburb just 40 miles from Pakistan's capital.
The Pakistani government had insisted for years that bin Laden was in the rugged tribal areas straddling the Afghan border and out of their reach.