May 11th, 2011
05:00 PM ET

Bin Laden relatives want probe and proof of death

(CNN) - Relatives of Osama bin Laden want proof that the terrorist leader is dead and are calling for an investigation into how he was killed, according to Jean Sasson, an author who helped one of bin Laden's sons write a memoir.

"They just really want some answers, and they would just really like to know what exactly happened, why they weren't called," said Sasson, who worked with Omar bin Laden to pen a memoir titled "Growing Up bin Laden."

The United States says U.S. Navy SEALs killed bin Laden during a May 2 raid in Abbottabad, Pakistan, where he was hiding out.

The forces collected a trove of intelligence from the compound and later buried bin Laden's body at sea. While the Obama administration has decided not to release photos of the slain bin Laden, some U.S. lawmakers will be allowed to view them.

Bin Laden's relatives "would like to have been able to have witnessed seeing the body, at least identified the body, because, you know how it is in the Middle East so many times: They really need proof or people start believing - this has been discussed by a lot more people than me - that many people will not believe that he's dead," Sasson told CNN Wednesday.

Her comments come a day after a statement from Omar bin Laden and his brothers was provided to The New York Times.

Asked about the statement, Sasson said Omar bin Laden - who has publicly denounced his father's violence - contacted her and told her he has some things to say. She said she prepared a letter for him and he approved it.

Another family member had gotten an attorney to write a letter about what relatives were thinking and feeling and Sasson said it was decided to go with the attorney's letter.

The statement published in The New York Times is from bin Laden's sons - "the lawful children and heirs" of the notorious al Qaeda leader.

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Filed under: 360° Radar • 360º Follow • Osama bin Laden
soundoff (3 Responses)
  1. Francene Issac

    I am sure that all the thousands of grieving families of 9/11 would have liked to have been able to see and say goodbye to the bodies of their loved ones also!

    May 11, 2011 at 11:04 pm |
  2. Abhinav

    Can his son prove me he is not a terrorist 😐

    May 11, 2011 at 9:55 pm |
  3. 2alago

    The Family wishes they could have had an opportunity to veiw the body? I bet a lot of the 9/11 families felt the same way....

    May 11, 2011 at 8:13 pm |