Bin Laden family arrives in Saudi Arabia

Bin Laden family arrives in Saudi Arabia

The widows of Osama bin Laden and a number of his children have arrived in Saudi Arabia after being deported from Pakistan.

A Pakistani court in April charged bin Laden's three widows and two of his grown-up daughters with illegal entry and residency in the country.

Bin Laden's two Saudi and one Yemeni widows, together with their children, have been living under the protection of the authorities in Pakistan since the al-Qaeda chief was killed by US Navy SEALs on May 2, 2011.

The family was believed to number 12, three widows, eight children and one grand child, though an interior ministry spokesman said orders were passed  for the deportation of 14 bin Laden relatives.

The family was originally supposed to be deported after completing their sentence last week but the move dragged on officially because legal formalities were not complete amid suggestions that the Saudis were reluctant to accept the family.

Bin Laden's discovery in Abbottabad dealt a huge blow to US-Pakistan relations and led to accusations of Pakistani complicity or incompetence.

After fleeing Afghanistan in the wake of the 9/11 attacks, bin Laden moved his family around Pakistan before settling in a three-storey house inside a  walled compound in the garrison town in 2005.

The family's prolonged detention after the raid fed speculation that the Pakistani authorities were worried about what they might reveal about bin Laden's time in the country and how he was able to live there for so long undetected.

According to a police report, Amal Abdulfattah, 30, bin Laden's youngest and reportedly favourite wife, told Pakistani interrogators that her husband fathered four children while he hid out in Pakistan.

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