US announces $10 million reward for Mehsud and Haqqani | world | Hindustan Times
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US announces $10 million reward for Mehsud and Haqqani

world Updated: Mar 26, 2009 21:43 IST
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The United States on Wednesday offered up to $10 million in rewards for information on Pakistani terrorist leaders Bitullah Mehsud, the mastermind behind the assassination of the former Premier Benazir Bhutto, and Sirajuddin Haqqani.

It also announced another $1 million award for Al-Qaeda terrorist leader Abu Yahya al-Libi, now believed to be hiding inside Pakistan or Afghanistan.

The US has awarded $5 million each for Baitullah Mehsud, the senior leader of Tehrik-e-Taliban (Taliban Movement of Pakistan) and Haqqani, a senior leader of the Haqqani terrorist network founded by his father Jalaladin Haqqani, State Department Deputy Acting Spokesman Gordon Duguid said in a statement.

"Mehsud is regarded as a key Al-Qaida facilitator in the tribal areas of South Waziristan in Pakistan," he said.

"Pakistani authorities believe that the January 2007 suicide attack against the Marriott Hotel in Islamabad was staged by militants loyal to Mehsud. Press reports also have linked Mehsud to the assassination of former Pakistani Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto and the deaths of other innocent civilians," Duguid said.

He said during an interview with an American news organization, Haqqani admitted planning the January 14, 2008 attack against the Serena Hotel in Kabul that killed six people, including an American citizen Thor David Hesla.