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Pakistan to let U.S. question 3 wives of bin Laden

By Bloomberg News

LAST UPDATED: 1:55 p.m. HST, May 9, 2011


Pakistan will allow U.S. officials to question the three wives of Osama bin Laden who were with him in the compound when American commandos killed the al-Qaeda leader, granting a measure of cooperation amid tensions following the raid.

The Obama administration expects to get access to the women soon, based on a response from the Pakistani government, a U.S. official said today on condition of anonymity. The specific timing of the access wasn't set, the official said.

The decision followed verbal skirmishing between the two sides over whether the U.S. should have involved Pakistan in the operation and how much, if anything, Pakistani authorities knew about bin Laden's presence in their country.

The Obama administration said today it won't apologize for entering Pakistani territory to raid Osama bin Laden's compound, as the South Asian country's prime minister tried to counter domestic criticism over the military's failure to detect and stop the U.S. attack.

"We obviously take the statements and concerns of the Pakistani government seriously," White House press secretary Jay Carney said today, speaking after Pakistan's Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani addressed his Parliament. "But we also do not apologize for the actions that we took."

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