Saturday, May 7, 2011
Where was Osama Bin Laden living?
Pakistan lies between Afghanistan and India.
Bin Laden was hiding in Abbottabad, which is located in North Afghanistan:
Abbottabad is a city located in the Hazara region of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, in Pakistan. The city is situated in the Orash Valley, 115 kilometres (71 mi) northeast of the capital Islamabad and 150 kilometres (93 mi) east of Peshawar at an altitude of 1,260 metres (4,134 ft) and is the capital of the Abbottabad District. The city is well-known throughout Pakistan for its pleasant weather, high-standard educational institutions and military establishments. Al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden lived in Abbottabad from 2005 until the time of his death in May 2011.
The town of Abbottabad, in British Raj, was the headquarters of the Hazara district during British rule of India. It was named after Major James Abbott who founded the town and district in January 1853 after the annexation of Punjab. He remained the first Deputy Commissioner of the Hazara district from 1849 until April 1853.
Major Abbott is noted for having written a poem titled "Abbottabad", before he went back to Britain, in which he wrote of his fondness for the town and his sadness at having to leave it. Abbottabad became and is still an important military cantonment and sanatorium, being the headquarters of a brigade in the Second Division of the Northern Army Corps. The garrison consisted of four battalions of native infantry (Gurkhas and Frontier Force) and four native mountain batteries.
In 1901, the population of the town and cantonment was 7,764 and the income averaged around Rs. 14,900. This increased to Rs. 22,300 in 1903, chiefly derived from octroi. During this time chief public institutions were built such as the Albert Victor unaided Anglo-Vernacular High School, the Municipal Anglo-Vernacular High School and the Government dispensary. In 1911, the population had risen to 11,506 and the town also contained four battalions of Gurkhas.
In June 1948, the British Red Cross opened a hospital in Abbottabad to deal with thousands of patients who were being brought in from the Kashmir fighting areas. On October 8, 2005 Abbottabad was devastated by the Kashmir earthquake. Although most of Abbottabad survived, many old buildings were destroyed or damaged.
On May 2, 2011, Abbottabad gained worldwide attention when U.S. President Barack Obama announced that Osama bin Laden had been killed in the city.
The city is bounded at all four sides by the Sarban hills, from which residents and tourists can see breathtaking views of the region and city. The location of the city and the hills allows Abbottabad to experience pleasant weather in the summer and cold winters. Neighbouring districts are Mansehra to the north, Muzaffarabad to the east, Haripur to the west and Rawalpindi to the south. Tarbela Dam is situated west of Abbottabad.
Abbottabad has been attracting tourists to the city since the colonial era, as it is a major transit point to all major tourist regions of Pakistan such as Nathiagali and Naran. According to the Imperial Gazetteer of India, "the town is picturesquely situated at the southern corner of the Rash (Orash) plain, 4,120 feet (1,260 m) above the sea". Like much of the mountainous Northern Areas, tourism is one of the important sources of income in Abbottabad. In the summer when temperatures rise to around 45 degrees Celsius in Punjab and NWFP, a large number of tourists travel north to Abbottabad.
The Karakoram Highway, which traces one of the paths of the ancient Silk Road, starts from Hasan Abdal on the N5 and heads north passing through the city eventually reaching Khunjerab Pass. The Karakorum Highway is a major attraction itself for its views. The Karakoram, Himalayas and the Hindu Kush ranges can be approached from Abbottabad and it continues to be a transit city for tourists, serving as a base for visiting numerous nearby places, such as Hunza, Gilgit, Skardu and Indus Kohistan, of the Karakoram Range.