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Bin Laden's base source of France attack plans: intel

Documents threatening France with attacks were found at the base where US soldiers killed Osama bin Laden, a French intelligence source told AFP.

world Updated: Sep 10, 2011 09:49 IST

Documents threatening France with attacks were found at the base where US soldiers killed Osama bin Laden, a French intelligence source told AFP.

"Yes, we received documents from our American friends," the source said on Friday, confirming earlier reports in Paris Match magazine and on France Info radio.

But he added that the documents were more expressions of intent than fully formed plans and needed to be seen in that context.

US Navy Seals seized the information during the May 2 operation in which they killed the leader of al Qaeda at a compound in Pakistan, ending one of the most high-profile manhunts in history.

While the documents certainly contained threats against France, they were "disjointed and... to be handled with caution," said the intelligence source.

They were more of a commentary than fatwa, or religious edict, the source added.

France's internal and foreign intelligence services, the DCRI and DGSE, refused to comment on the matter.

Bin Laden made several threats against France, the last one coming in an audio-taped message issued in January 2011.

In June, following the raid, US President Barack Obama said that the documents recovered from the raid showed that the al Qaeda network was under "enormous strain."