Lahore, Mar.21 (ANI): In a stunning disclosure that once again confirmed the nexus between Pakistan's Inter Services Intelligence (ISI) and banned militant outfits, a former ISI official, Khalid Khwaja, has claimed to have arranged at least five meetings between Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and Al-Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden.
In an interview with a private television channel, Khwaja said Sharif has met several Islamic movement leaders around the world, including Osama and asked him to provide fund for 'development projects'.
Khwaja said that he had arranged three meeting between Sharif and Osama in Saudi Arabia.
"Nawaz insisted that I arrange a direct meeting with Osama, which I did in Saudi Arabia. Nawaz was looking for a 500 million rupees grant from Osama. Although Osama provided a comparatively smaller sum ... he secured for Nawaz a meeting with the Saudi royal family," The Daily Times quoted Khwaja, as saying.
He also claimed that Osama had provided him funds to hand over to the incumbent Punjab Chief Minister to overthrow the then Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto's government.
"I still remember that Osama provided me funds that I handed over to then Punjab chief minister Nawaz to topple Benazir Bhutto's government,"Khwaja said.
Khwaja claimed that he maintained a close relationship between Osama, as after being 'forced' to retire he went to Afghanistan in 1987 and fought against the Soviet troops 'alongside Osama.' (ANI)