Former president Pervez Musharraf has said Osama’s presence in Pakistan was not a conspiracy but negligence.
Talking to a US-based news channel in an interview, Musharraf asserted he can say with conviction that none in the government or the secret agencies knew about Bin Laden’s presence on Pakistani soil. He observed, “Part of the problem, I think, certainly for Americans, is a question of trust. When they discovered that Osama bin Laden had been hiding in Pakistan, they're not going to believe that no one in any position of authority in the Pakistan government or intelligence services knew about it.” The former Chief of the Army Staff (COAS) said he was the president as well as army chief at the time; hence, it was not possible that secret services kept something concealed from him. For his part, the retired four-star general admits it's difficult to comprehend, but stands by his claim of naiveté: He added, "I totally agree with you, that it is not believable. But I personally am convinced that it is a case of negligence and not a case of complicity," says Musharraf. "I believe that. I strongly believe that that is the truth." "It defies belief that somebody as notorious as Osama bin Laden could be living in that compound, so close to military installations, but nobody knew," presses Morgan. "You never heard a single...rumor or whisper?" "Is it possible that the intelligence agencies were hiding from me?" responds the former Pakistani President. "No, that is not possible because I was the army chief also. And the ISI, the intelligence agencies, are manned, mainly officered by military, army, navy, air force, mainly army. Most of them have associations with me. So if somebody was hiding on top, somebody below, in the second, third tiers, would have come and told me. So this is not possible at all."