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Pakistan still holding bin Laden family months after raid

ISLAMABAD, Pakistan — The family of Osama bin Laden's youngest wife has asked the chief justice of Pakistan to order authorities to release her children and her and allow them to return to Yemen, nine months after the U.S. special forces raid that killed the founder of al-Qaida.

Zakaria Ahmad al-Sadah, brother of Amal al-Sadah, bin Laden's Yemeni wife, said in an interview that he had appealed directly to the chief justice, Iftikhar Chaudhry, as a "last resort" after spending three fruitless months in Pakistan seeking her release.

He said his sister's five children, whose ages range from 3 to 12, were in poor mental health and had received no schooling since they were taken into custody after the raid May 2.

The U.S. raiding party took bin Laden's body from the hideout in Abbottabad but left behind Amal al-Sadah, 31, and her children, as well as two other wives and four other children, who Zakaria al-Sadah said were bin Laden's grandchildren.

Al-Sadah lodged his two-page petition with the Supreme Court on Thursday. A 24-year-old student at the University of Sana in Yemen's capital, he said he had met with his sister and the children about 10 times since he arrived in Pakistan on Nov. 1.

He said that his sister, her children and the other wives and children are being held in a small Islamabad apartment.

The Pakistani commission formed to investigate bin Laden's presence in the country interviewed his wives and called in October for them to be sent back to their home countries.

Pakistan still holding bin Laden family months after raid 02/14/12 [Last modified: Tuesday, February 14, 2012 9:29pm]
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