New York: Obama administration officials were
caught off-guard by the demolition of slain al Qaeda leader
Osama bin Laden's house in Abbottabad by Pakistani
authorities, a media report said on Monday.
"The Pakistanis have been saying for a while that they
wanted to do this (demolish bin Laden's compound), but the
timing came as a complete surprise," an administration
official was quoted as saying in a New York Times report.
The official said with the anniversary of the raid that
killed bin Laden approaching in early May, "the Pakistanis
really don't want to have all this attention around it".
He added that the house's destruction is not likely to
affect efforts to rekindle relations between the US and
Pakistan, which have been deteriorated since an American
airstrike killed 24 Pakistani troops near the Afghan border in
Pakistani authorities yesterday demolished the house in
the Pakistani town where bin Laden had lived with his three
wives and children undetected for years.
He was killed in a May 2 raid by US Navy Seals who flew
into Pakistan unannounced and left the country's airspace
nearly an hour later carrying bin Laden's corpse.
The raid came as an embarrassment for Pakistan's powerful
military and its intelligence agency ISI with questions being
raised as to how the world's most wanted man could have lived
under the noses of the authorities without being detected for
First Published: Sunday, February 26, 2012, 20:34