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Bin Laden Fathered 4 Children, Hid In 5 Safe Houses While On Run, Wife Says

During nine years on the run in Pakistan, Osama bin Laden used at least five safe houses and fathered four children, the youngest of his three wives has told Pakistani investigators, according toThe New York Times.

Amal Ahmad Abdul Fateh, now 30, married bin Laden in 2000.

In what the Times says is "the most detailed account yet" of where the al-Qaida leader and his family were in the years after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks and before he was killed by U.S. Navy SEALs last May in Abbottabad, Pakistan, Fateh has said she fled with a daughter from Afghanistan to Karachi, Pakistan, after the 2001 attacks.

In the second half of 2002, she joined bin Laden in Peshawar, Pakistan, Fateh says. The family went to that country's Swat Valley, then to the city of Haripur in 2003 and to Abbottabad in 2005, according to her account. Fateh says she gave birth to two children while in Haripur and two more in Abbottabad.

The Times writes that Fateh claims that along the way, they got help from "Pashtun hosts."

Pakistan is pursuing charges against the wives and other members of bin Laden's family that include harboring a criminal, making false statements and illegally entering the country, as DAWN has reported.

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Mark Memmott is NPR's supervising senior editor for Standards & Practices. In that role, he's a resource for NPR's journalists – helping them raise the right questions as they do their work and uphold the organization's standards.
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