Pak’s former IB chief who helped Osama sworn in as minister

A boy uses a bamboo stick to adjust national flags at an overhead bridge ahead of Pakistan’s Independence Day, in Islamabad, Pakistan August 10, 2018. REUTERS/Faisal Mahmood






Despite objections from the Opposition, Pakistan’s former Intelligence Bureau (IB) chief Ijaz Shah, who aided Osama bin Laden in Pakistan, was sworn in as Minister for Parliamentary Affairs on Tuesday by President Arif Alvi here.

The move has put the Imran Khan-led government and the Opposition, especially the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP), at odds as former prime minister Benazir Bhutto had alleged that Shah was among the people who had hatched a conspiracy to kill her, reports Dawn.

Shah, a confidant of former Pakistan president General Pervez Musharraf, has also been accused of harbouring terror outfit Al-Qaeda’s founder-leader Osama bin Laden in Pakistan. Laden was most wanted by the United States for perpetrating the gruesome 9/11 attacks.

In its report in 2012, The Sydney Morning Herald had quoted former ISI chief General Ziauddin Butt as saying that Shah had ordered to build the three-storied walled compound in Abbottabad where Laden was hunted down and terminated by the US Forces in 2011.

“I fully believe that Ijaz Shah had kept this man (Osama bin Laden, in Abbottabad) with the full knowledge of Pervez Musharraf,” Butt had alleged. Shah has since dismissed the allegations.Shah served as Pakistan’s IB Director General from 2004 to 2008. He was also elected as a Member of National Assembly (MNA) on Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf’s (PTI) ticket from NA-118 (Nankana Sahib-II).

Alleging that Pakistan Prime Minister has no respect for the Parliament, PPP leader Syed Khursheed Shah told Dawn, “Ijaz Shah is being made the minister to make parliament redundant and to further degrade it.” He added that Shah was made the minister to “provoke” the Opposition.

According to the PPP leader, Shah has been “brought to power as an alternative” to Musharraf, who currently lives in Dubai.

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