U.S. troops kill Osama bin Laden in Pakistan
Osama Bin Laden, seen in an undated photo, attending a meeting with a Kalashnikov on his lap in an undisclosed place.
May 2nd, 2011
11:11 PM ET

U.S. troops kill Osama bin Laden in Pakistan

Editor's note: We'll be providing you with the latest information, the most interesting and compelling details and angles on Osama bin Laden's death as we get them here on this live blog. For the big picture that tells the story in full, click here. But stay with us for news as it continues to break.

[Updated 10:01 p.m. ET] CNN's Chris Lawrence explains, step by step, the raid that killed Osama bin Laden early Monday at a compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan:

[Updated 9:30 p.m. ET] Addressing a group of congressional leaders at the White House this evening, President Barack Obama said that when Americans learned of Osama bin Laden's death, "I think we experienced the same sense of unity that prevailed on 9/11."

"We were reminded again that there is a pride in what this nation stands for and what we can achieve that runs far deeper than party, far deeper than politics," Obama said. "I want to again recognize the heroes who carried out this incredibly dangerous mission as well as all the military and counterterrorism professionals who made the mission possible.”

THE OPERATION: Attack details | Timeline | In plain sight | The compound Video
U.S. | World | Middle East  | Healing wounds | Your thoughts
Bin Laden, over the years | Face of terror | Ideology lives on| His life Video
: What's next for al Qaeda | A deathblow to al Qaeda?
A victory for Obama, U.S. | Re-election impact?
: Obama: Justice done | Watch Video | Transcript

THE PAKISTANIS: What did Pakistan know?Pakistan's role? Video 

[Updated 9:10 p.m. ET] A senior U.S. official says that the woman who has killed during the raid on the compound where Osama bin Laden was found was not a wife of bin Laden, and that she may not have been used as a human shield as previously reported. A wife was there, according to an official, but not killed.

Earlier Monday, John Brennan, assistant to the president for homeland security and counterterrorism, told reporters that it was his understanding that the woman who was killed was one of bin Laden's wives. Other officials had said that the woman who died was used as a human shield in an attempt to protect bin Laden.

[Updated 8:48 p.m. ET] Time magazine contributor Omar Waraich says he spoke to Sohaib Athar, an Abbottabad resident and software engineer who unknowingly reported, on Twitter, details of Monday morning's raid that killed Osama bin Laden. Athar had written on Twitter that, among other things, he was hearing a helicopter hovering above Abbottabad.

"When he found out (the commotion was because of) Osama bin Laden, he said to me it was quite ironic," Waraich told CNN's John King. "He said he had left his native city of Lahore, the second largest city in Pakistan, for the quiet of Abbottabad so he could escape suicide bombings and the sounds of explosions rattling his home and frightening himself and his wife. And he said the ultimate irony was that (in) this quiet place he'd moved to, he had found Osama bin Laden as a neighbor.”

[Updated 8:27 p.m. ET] A Time magazine contributor says people with whom he spoke in Abbottabad - the Pakistani city where Osama bin Laden was found and killed early Monday - seemed surprised at the news that the al Qaeda leader had been there.

"When they found out that it was Osama bin Laden in (the compound), expressions just ranged from varying degrees of incredulity," Time contributor Omar Waraich told CNN's John King.

Waraich said people he spoke to in Abbottabad seemed neither ecstatic nor saddened that United States forces had killed bin Laden.

"In fact, Osama bin Laden seemed a bit of a mystery to them throughout the time that they’ve heard of him. They had heard, they said, that he was in Pakistan, but they didn't imagine where, and certainly if they thought he would be in Pakistan, he would be in the tribal areas, some distance away from them," Waraich said.

[Updated 7:28 p.m. ET] More details about Monday morning's raid that killed Osama bin Laden at a compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan, according to a U.S. official: Four helicopters were involved in the operation, but not all were on the ground.

About two dozen commandos were involved in the operation on the ground, the U.S. official said.

Officials don't know how long bin Laden was at the compound, which was completed in 2005, but they believe it was built especially for him, the U.S. official said. The U.S. intelligence community never saw bin Laden in or around the compound before the raid, according to the official.

[Updated 7:15 p.m. ET] U.S. forces shot Osama bin Laden first in the chest, and then in the head during Monday morning's raid on a compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan, a senior U.S. administration official said, according to CNN's Ed Henry. Previously, CNN had reported that bin Laden was shot only in the head.

[Updated 7:12 p.m. ET] President Barack Obama will travel to New York City on Thursday to visit the site of the former World Trade Center and meet with families of those who died in the September 11 attacks, a senior White House official said.

[Updated 6:02 p.m. ET] A U.S. official said multiple options were considered before settling on the assault that killed Osama bin Laden early Monday at a compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan.

"A bombing would not have risked American lives but it might have left questions" as to whether bin Laden was killed, the official said. National security officials widely agreed "the best option is the one that gives proof," the official said.

A U.S. official says the United States' codename for bin Laden was "Geronimo." [Edit, 8:55 p.m. ET]: A senior administration official said later that "Geronimo" was code for the act of capturing or killing bin Laden, not the man himself.

[Updated 5:54 p.m. ET] The United Nations Security Council "welcomes the news on May 1, 2011, that Osama bin Laden will never again be able to perpetrate ... acts of terrorism, and reaffirms that terrorism cannot and should not be associated with any religion, nationality, civilization or group," the Security Council's current president, French ambassador Gerard Araud, said during a council session in New York on Monday.

"The Security Council recognizes this critical development and other accomplishments made in the fight against terrorism and urges all states to remain vigilant and intensify their efforts in the fight against terrorism," Araud said.

[Updated 5:35 p.m. ET] More from this afternoon's media briefing by John Brennan, President Barack Obama's adviser on homeland security and counterterrorism: When asked whether the U.S. forces who participated in the raid that killed Osama bin Laden picked up any documentation in the compound, Brennan said the Americans took time to "acquire whatever material we thought was appropriate and what was needed."

"We are in the process right now of looking at whatever might have been picked up," Brennan said. "But I'm not going to go into details about what might have been acquired. We feel as though this is a very important time to continue to prosecute this effort against al Qaeda, take advantage of the success of yesterday, and to continue to work to break the back of al Qaeda."

[Updated 4:38 p.m. ET] U.S. House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, told reporters Monday afternoon that news of Osama bin Laden's death "unified our country in much the same way" that the September 11 attacks did.

"Our fight for freedom and liberty around the globe continues. We face a complex and dangerous threat even today. It’s important that we remain vigiliant in our efforts to defeat terrorist enemies and to protect the American people. This makes our engagements in Pakistan and Afghanistan more important, not less," Boehner said.

"I want to congratulate and thank the hard-working men and women of the United States armed services," Boehner added. "I want to thank all of those involved in the intelligence community for their tireless efforts and perseverance that led to this successful evening. I also want to commend President Obama and President Bush for all their efforts to bring Osama bin Laden to justice."

[Updated 4:10 p.m. ET] The United States expects that a recording from Osama bin Laden - made before he was killed, with the intention that his supporters would distribute it upon his death - will be released, a U.S. official has told CNN.

[Updated 3:34 p.m. ET] John Brennan, President Barack Obama's adviser on homeland security and counterterrorism, says it's his understanding that a woman who was used as a human shield in an attempt to protect Osama bin Laden was one of bin Laden's wives.

Officials have said that a woman who was used as a shield by a male combatant was one of four people besides bin Laden who were killed during U.S. forces' assault on a compound early Monday in Abbottabad, Pakistan.

Brennan said it is his understanding that the woman was one of bin Laden's wives, and that she "reportedly was used as a shield to shield bin Laden from the incoming fire."

[Updated 3:16 p.m. ET] Will anyone get the up to $25 million bounty that the United States had put on Osama bin Laden? CNNMoney's Ben Rooney looks into it.

[Updated 2:38 p.m. ET] President Barack Obama's top counterterrorism adviser said Monday that the elimination of Osama bin Laden is "a strategic blow" to al Qaeda.

"It is a necessary but not necessarily sufficient blow to lead to its demise," said John Brennan, Obama's adviser on homeland security and counterterrorism.

[Updated 2:33 p.m. ET] President Obama and his top intelligence and military officials were able to monitor in a "real-time basis" the progress of the operation on Osama bin Laden's compound, the president's top counterterrorism adviser said.

"It was probably one of the most anxiety filled periods of time I think in the lives of the people who were assembled here yesterday. The minutes passed like days and the president was very concerned about the security of our personnel," John Brennan said. "That is what was on his mind throughout and we wanted to make sure that we would get through this and accomplish the mission. But it was clearly very tense. A lot of people holding their breath."

Brennan said "there was a tremendous sigh of relief" when they believed bin Laden was in fact at the compound.

[Updated 2:30 p.m. ET] A woman shielded Osama bin Laden from gunfire during the assault by U.S. forces, President Barack Obama's top counterterrorism adviser said Monday.

"There was a female who was in fact in the line of fire that reportedly was used as a shield to shield bin Laden from the incoming fire," said John Brennan, Obama's adviser on homeland security and counterterrorism.

Brennan said it was his understanding that bin Laden picked up a weapon and was killed in the firefight with the U.S. forces carrying out the assault.

"He was engaged in a firefight," Brennan said of bin Laden. "Whether or not he got off any rounds, I don't know."

[Updated 2:21 p.m. ET] The decision by President Barack Obama to launch the assault that killed Osama bin Laden was one of the "gutsiest" calls by any president in recent memory, Obama's top counterterrorism adviser said Monday.

John Brennan, assistant to the president for homeland security and counterterrorism, said that despite intelligence indicating that bin Laden was in the compound in Pakistan, there was no certainty the al Qaeda leader was actually there.

Obama "made what I believe was one of the ... gutsiest calls of any president in recent memory," Brennan said.

[Updated 2:08 p.m. ET] President Barack Obama's top counterterrorism adviser said Monday that it was "inconceivable" that Osama bin Laden did not have some kind of support system in Pakistan that allowed him to live in hiding there.

John Brennan, the president's assistant on homeland security and counterterrorism, refused to speculate on what kind of support bin Laden might have received, or whether the Pakistani government or official Pakistani institutions had any role.

[Updated 1:39 p.m. ET] Officials compared DNA of the person killed at the Abbottabad compound with bin Laden "family DNA" to determine that the 9/11 mastermind had in fact been killed, a senior administration official said.

Four others in the compound also were killed. One of them was bin Laden's adult son, and another was a woman being used as a shield by a male combatant, officials said.

[Updated 12:39 p.m. ET] The compound where Osama bin Laden was killed by U.S. forces is located a bit more than 1,000 yards from a Pakistan Military Academy, raising some questions about how much information the Pakistan military may have had about his whereabouts.

U.S. Sen. Carl Levin, Senate Armed Services Committee chairman, said during a press conference that the Pakistani army has "a lot of explaining to do."

[Updated 12:27 p.m. ET] Senior defense officials said that for a majority of the 40 minute operation at the Abbottobad compound, special forces were involved in a firefight - clearing their way through two other floors before they reached Osama bin Laden.

Bin Laden was not killed until the last five to ten minutes of the firefight, officials said.

Bin Laden and his family lived on the 2nd and 3rd floors of the 3-story building, and those floors were cleared last, the official said. The official says one of bin Laden’s own wives identified his body to U.S. forces, after the team made visual identification themselves.

U.S. forces also recovered what a senior Intelligence official is calling “quite a bit of material.”

“There’s a robust collection of materials we need to sift through, and we hope to find valuable intelligence that will lead us to other players in al Qaeda,"  a senior intelligence official said.

The official added a Task Force has been set up “because of the sheer volume of material collected. That material is currently being exploited and analyzed.”

[Updated 12:25 p.m. ET] A soldier in a special forces unit based in Georgia told CNN on Monday that while the news of Osama bin Laden’s death is cause for celebration, elite military units have sprang into high alert.

“A lot of guys got their security clearances elevated due to what happened last night,” said Lamont, who didn’t give his last name because of what he said were security reasons. “I lot of people got called back” overseas, he said, adding that his unit already was scheduled for deployment as early as two weeks ago.

[Updated 12:22 p.m. ET] Osama bin Laden's body was buried at sea according to Islamic law because no country was willing or able to take his body for burial on land, senior Defense officials said.

"When there is no land alternative, Islamic law dictates that the body be buried within 24 hours, and that was the basis," one official said. "

A second senior Defense official said there was no country willing or able to accept the body for burial, and U.S. forces "took pains to observe Muslim law."

"Today's religious rites were conducted on the deck of the USS Carl Vinson in the Arabian sea. The ceremony started at 1:10am and finished at 2:10am ET," the second official said. "Procedures for Islamic body were followed. The body was washed and placed in a white sheet. A military official read prepared remarks, which were then translated into Arabic by a native speaker. The body of Osama bin Laden was placed on a flat board, which was then tipped up, and allowed to slide into the sea."

[Updated 12:16 p.m. ET] President Barack Obama said Monday that he thinks "we can all agree this is a good day for America."

"Our country kept its commitment to see that justice is done," he said. The world, he said, is a better place because of the death of Osama bin Laden.

The successful operation to kill bin Laden reminds Americans that there is "nothing we can't do" when we work together, he said. That spirit, he said, is seen in the patriotic crowds that have gathered across the country.

"We're reminded that we're fortunate to have Americans who have dedicated their lives to protecting ours," he said. "As commander-in-chief, I could not be prouder."

[Updated 11:16 am. ET] A DNA match confirms Osama bin Laden was killed in a U.S. operation, a senior administration official told CNN Monday.

[Updated 11:09 am. ET] As the assault on bin Laden's compound commenced, the United States had a number of U.S. aircraft flying protective missions, according to a senior U.S. military official. None of the aircraft entered Pakistani airspace but they were prepared to do so if needed, the official told CNN.

These included fixed wing fighter jets that would have provided firepower if the team came under opposition fire it could not handle. There were also armed and unarmed Predator drones providing additional firepower as well as surveillance. The Air Force also had a full team of combat search and rescue helicopters including MH-53 Pave Low and HH-60 Pave Hawk helicopters flying.

[Updated at 11:07 a.m.] Pakistanis passed along raw phone-tap data to the United States that eventually led to Osama bin Laden's killing, but they failed to analyze or interpret the information themselves, a Pakistani intelligence official told CNN.

The details of what Pakistanis did or didn't know or do about the daring American operation to kill bin Laden - from intelligence gathering to the execution of the raid - remained unclear Monday.

But the intelligence official said that information about bin Laden and the people in the compound where he stayed "slipped from" Pakistan's "radar" over the months.

The intelligence official said Pakistan regularly passed along intelligence of interest to Americans.

The official did not say over what period the data was collected, but noted that from September the United States "was concentrating on this."

He added that much of the focus was on a courier coming and going to the compound. He did not give the courier's nationality or name.

Osama bin Laden was not in contact with other militant networks while he was there and maintained "an invisible footprint," the official said.

Of the raid, he said, "I think they came in undetected and went out the same day."

He added Pakistan officials do not think there were any U.S. intelligence personnel on the ground ahead of the special operations forces.

[Updated 10:55 a.m. ET] A U.S. official disputed reports that bin Laden had altered his appearance to avoid recognition.

The official said Bin Laden was recognizable on scene. He was "not transformed somehow."

A visual ID was made, there were photo comparisons and other facial recognition used to identify him, the official said. A second official said that in addition to DNA there was full biometric analysis of facial and body features.

[Updated 10:50 a.m. ET] There was no indication bin Laden was going to surrender when the U.S. launched its operation, a U.S. official said.

"There was no evidence they tried to surrender," the official told CNN. “The order going in was to get UBL (Osama bin Laden)”

“All of the contingency planning was that we would encounter heavy resistance," the U.S. official said. "That is what we expected and what happened. Obviously if everybody had put there hands up and surrendered we would have taken them but that did not happen and we did not expect it.”

That assumption bore itself out, the official said.

“We encountered resistance upon entering the compound," CNN was told.

A second U.S. official says the president's order was always to capture or kill bin Laden. The second official said the assumption all along was there would be no surrender by the al Qaeda leader.

The official said that the mission was originally supposed to happen on Saturday, but would not discuss why it was delayed until Sunday.

[Updated 9:56 a.m. ET] Posters to some of the radical websites that bin Laden's terrorist network used to speak to the world celebrated him as a martyr and vowed the group will continue despite its leader's death.

"Congratulations for dying as a martyr and a fighter in the sake of Allah," one poster wrote.

"We won't cry today, but we will revenge. Men and women in America will cry." another post read, echoing warnings from Western leaders that the terrorist network will almost certainly move to avenge bin Laden's death.

The sites, frequented by radical Islamists who subscribed to bin Laden's philosophies, have played a significant role in attracting and radicalizing potential terror recruits and the broader radical Islamist community and have been frequently used by al Qaeda and its affiliates to broadcast statements.

Many of the posters reacting to bin Laden's death referred to him as a "shaheed," or martyr. One was headlined "The Lion of Jihad was killed in a fierce battle."

[Updated 9:56 a.m. ET]  U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said Monday that the death of Osama bin Laden sends a message to the Taliban in Afghanistan that "you cannot wait us out. You cannot defeat us. But you can make the choice to abandon al Qaeda" and participate in a peaceful political process.

Bin Laden's death comes at a time of "great movements toward freedom and democracy" in the Middle East and elsewhere, she said.

"There is no better rebuke to al Qaeda and its heinous ideology," she said. "The fight continues and we will never waiver."

Some doubted bin Laden would ever be caught, she said, but "this is America. ... We persevere, and we get the job done."

[Updated 9:45 a.m. ET] U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said Monday that "Osama bin Laden is dead and justice has been done."

"I want to offer my thoughts and prayers" to families of those killed due to bin Laden's campaign of terror, she said.

His attacks showed "no value for human life or regard for human dignity," she said. But now "justice has been served."

Clinton offered thanks to military, diplomatic, and security officials who launched "broad, deep, very impressive effort" to hunt down bin Laden as part of the anti-terror campaign.

"We must take this opportunity to renew our resolve and redouble our effort" in Afghanistan and elsewhere, she said.

[Updated 9:19 a.m. ET] Terrorists "almost certainly will attempt to avenge" the death of Osama bin Laden, CIA Director Leon Panetta said in a message sent to agency employees.

[Updated 8:52 a.m. ET] The operation targeting Osama bin Laden was designed and executed as an operation to kill him, rather than to take him alive, a U.S. government official tells CNN.

[Updated 8:40 a.m. ET] Pakistan's ambassador to the United States said both countries "cooperated in making sure" that the operation leading to Osama bin Laden's death was "successful." Husain Haqqani told CNN's "American Morning" that President Barack Obama called Pakistan's president to thank him for Pakistan's cooperation.

[Updated, 8:12 a.m. ET] The operation that led to Osama bin Laden's death was American action, a Pakistani official told CNN. "We assisted only in terms of authorization of the helicopter flights in our airspace," said the official, who asked not to be named because he was not authorized to speak about the issue. "In any event, we did not want anything to do with such an operation in case something went wrong," the official said.

[Updated, 7:30 a.m. ET] A U.S. government official tells CNN that DNA matching is underway on the samples from the body of Osama bin Laden. The matching has not been completed, but there are photographs of the body with a gunshot wound to the side of the head that shows an individual that is not unrecognizable as bin Laden.

No decision has yet been made on whether to release the photographs and if so, when and how.

[Updated, 5:38 a.m. ET] For much of the world, Osama bin Laden was the face of al Qaeda. He was, after all, the man who oversaw the September 11, 2001, attacks.

With bin Laden gone, the question now becomes "What happens to al Qaeda?"

Within hours of bin Laden's death, questions began to emerge about who would take the helm of the organization and whether it would create an opportunity for other Islamic organizations to step up.

"Al Qaeda is weakened. But it doesn't mean that the United States has no challenges," Steven L. Spiegel, director for Middle East development at the University of California Los Angeles, said early Monday.

[Updated, 5:22 a.m. ET] Diana Massaroli, whose husband Michael was killed on September 11, 2001 when a jet plane slammed into the World Trade Center, said the death of bin Laden helped give her closure.

"I'm missing him, but I feel that justice has been done," she said at ground zero, the site where the World Trade Center once stood, holding a picture of Michael.

"I feel some overall calm that I haven't felt in 10 years. I never thought it would happen... never thought it would give me a feeling of closure," she said.

But, she added, "I feel better... like I can start a new chapter in my life."

[Updated, 3:36 a.m. ET] Afghan President Hamid Karzai said Monday he hopes the world believes that his country is "not the place of terrorism," hours after the United States announced that al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden was killed in neighboring Pakistan.

"If the international troops are the true allies of Afghans, now they should come up to say that killing of the Afghans, women, children and elders was not a good idea in the last many years as it was happening on a daily basis," Karzai said on RTA TV.

[Updated, 3:12 a.m. ET] A U.S. official said that Osama bin Laden has been buried at sea.  The official said his body was handled in the Islamic tradition, but did not elaborate.

[Updated, 2:31 a.m. ET] U.S. officials said they used facial imaging and other methods to identify the body of Osama bin Laden.

One official said it was clear to the assault force that the body matched bin Laden's description, but they used "facial recognition work, amongst other things, to confirm the identity."

A senior national security official said that they had multiple confirmations that the body was bin Laden, saying they had the "ability to run images of the body and the face."

The national security official would not confirm if DNA testing was performed.

[Updated, 2:15 a.m. ET] The leader of an Afghanistan opposition party on Monday said the killing of al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden proves that Pakistan is a "haven" for terror groups.

U.S. forces killed bin Laden in a mansion outside the Pakistani capital of Islamabad.

"Killing of Osama bin Laden is pleasant news for Afghans, and now it's proven that al Qaeda and other terrorist organizations are not based in Afghanistan and Pakistan is a haven for them," said Abdullah  Abdullah, the leader of the Hope and Change political party in Afghanistan.

[Updated, 1:56 a.m. ET] The United States' Department of Homeland Security did not immediately raise the terror-threat level in the aftermath of Osama bin Laden's death, a department official told CNN early Monday.

"We remain at a heightened state of vigilance.  Secretary (Janet) Napolitano has been clear since announcing the NTAS (National Terrorism Advisory System) in January that we will only issue alerts when we have specific or credible information to convey to the American public," the official said.

[Updated, 1:42 a.m. ET] Former President George W. Bush said of the death of Osama bin Laden:  "This momentous achievement marks a victory for America, for people who seek peace around the world, and for all those who lost loved ones on September 11, 2001.  The fight against terror goes on, but tonight America has sent an unmistakable message:  No matter how long it takes, justice will be done."

[Updated, 1:36 a.m. ET] As news of bin Laden's death reached people via cell phones late Sunday, thousands of fans at a Philadelphia Phillies baseball game chanted "USA! USA!" in the ninth inning of a Phillies-Mets game.

[Updated, 1:26 a.m. ET] A congressional source familiar with the operation that killed Osama bin Laden confirmed that the terror mastermind was shot in the head during the U.S. raid, according to a briefing the source received, CNN's Dana Bash reports.

The source would not go into details of others who were killed, except to say the operation was conducted carefully to avoid harming women and children.

Asked if there is any intelligence that shows whether bin Laden's death could trigger pre-planned attacks, the source said no, but added there is obvious concern about retaliation.


[Updated, 1:14 a.m. ET] Video from Pakistan's Geo TV is showing a fire at what apparently is the Abbottabad, Pakistan, compound where U.S. President Barack Obama said a "small team of Americans" launched a firefight Sunday that resulted in Osama bin Laden's death.

Here is the video:

[Updated, 1:08 a.m. ET] Crowds continue to celebrate Osama bin Laden's death at the site of the former World Trade Center in New York and outside the White House in Washington.

One of the celebrants in New York, retired New York City police officer Bob Gibson, said he knew people who died in the September 11 attacks.

"I never thought this night would come, where we would actually capture or kill bin Laden, and thank the lord, he's been eliminated, to put it politely," Gibson told CNN's Jason Carroll. "A lot of us .. gave up. But it did come, and a lot of us are overjoyed that it happened."

[Updated, 12:54 a.m. ET] CNN's Chris Lawrence, citing U.S. officials, reports that the compound where bin Laden was found - in Abbotabad, Pakistan, about 100 kilometers outside Pakistan's capital of Islamabad - was three stories tall, and about eight times larger than any of the buildings around it.

An official said a "small U.S. team" was involved in the operation at the compound - the official would not confirm any U.S. military involvement. An official said bin Laden resisted the assault - and was killed in the firefight.

Three other men were killed in the firefight, and a woman being used as a human shield was also killed, the officials said. There were no U.S. casualties, the officials said. The U.S. team was at the compound for about 40 minutes, officials said.

A U.S. helicopter crashed during the raid because of mechanical reasons, an official said. It was destroyed, the officials said.

[Updated, 12:54 a.m. ET] A senior administration official told reporters that U.S. President Barack Obama's administration did not share intelligence gathered before the attack on bin Laden in Pakistan with any other country - including Pakistan - for security reasons.

The official said that only a small group of people inside the U.S. government knew about this operation targeting Osama bin Laden in advance.

[Updated, 12:44 a.m. ET] Many hundreds of people have gathered at the former World Trade Center site in New York City, cheering news of Osama bin Laden's death.

Chants of "USA! USA!" are coming from the crowd.

"It's just the most out-of body experience to feel so involved in history, this such a historic moment for our country right now," a woman told CNN's Jason Carroll.

[Updated, 12:35 a.m. ET] The U.S. State Department warned Americans living abroad of "enhanced potential for anti-American violence" following the death of terrorist leader Osama bin Laden.  The announcement was made in a worldwide travel alert issued early Monday.

[Updated, 12:24 a.m. ET] A team of U.S. Navy SEALs carried out the operation in Pakistan that ended in the death of al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden, CNN's Chris Lawrence reported.  The operation lasted about 40 minutes, and the team had practiced the raid a few times.

Earlier, CNN's Nick Paton Walsh, citing  a senior Pakistani intelligence official, reported that members of Pakistan's intelligence service - the ISI - were on site in Abbotabad, Pakistan, during the operation that killed  bin Laden. The official said he did not know who fired the shot that actually killed Bin Laden.

[Updated, 12:11 a.m. ET] Members of Pakistan's intelligence service - the ISI - were on site in Abbotabad, Pakistan, during the operation that killed Osama bin Laden, CNN's Nick Paton Walsh reports, citing a senior Pakistani intelligence official. The official said he did not know who fired the shot that actually killed Bin Laden.

[Updated, 12:06 a.m. ET] The crowd celebrating bin Laden's death outside the White House has grown significantly. Lots of cheering and waving of the U.S. flag.

Here is video of the crowd:

[Updated, 11:59 p.m. ET] More detail on where Osama bin Laden was killed: Forces killed him at a compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan, after a firefight, U.S. President Barack Obama said.

Cooperation with Pakistan helped lead U.S. forces to Osama bin Laden and the compound where he was hiding, President Barack Obama said.

Obama said he ordered the attack after he decided last week that the United States had actionable intelligence that bin Laden was in the compound.

[Updated, 11:56 p.m. ET] U.S. diplomatic facilities around the world were placed on high alert following the announcement of Osama bin Laden's death, a senior U.S. official said. The U.S. State Department should be sending out a new "worldwide caution" for Americans shortly.

[Updated, 11:44 p.m. ET] Bin Laden was killed in a military operation in Pakistan that U.S. President Barack Obama ordered today, Obama said.

Obama said he was told last August that the United States had developed a possible lead on bin Laden - intelligence on bin Laden hiding in a compound in Pakistan. Obama said he determined last week that the United States had actionable intelligence.

"Today at my direction, the United States directed a targeted operation against that compound," Obama said.

Bin Laden was killed after a firefight, and forces took custody of his body, the president said. No Americans were harmed, Obama said.

[Updated, 11:36 p.m. ET] U.S. President Barack Obama announced Sunday night that al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden is dead.

"Tonight I can report to the American people and to the world that the United States has conducted an operation that has killed Osama bin Laden, the leader of al Qaeda," Obama said.

[Updated, 11:33 p.m. ET]  Osama bin Laden was killed by a "U.S. military asset," according to a senior U.S. official.

Earlier, a senior U.S. official says bin Laden was killed by U.S. forces in a mansion outside the Pakistani capital of Islamabad along with other family members.

U.S. President Barack Obama is expected to address the nation shortly.

[Updated, 11:20 p.m. ET] A crowd that has gathered outside the White House is singing the national anthem, within an hour after reports that al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden has been killed.

The group also chanted, "USA! USA!" and "Hey, hey, goodbye!" in reference to  bin Laden.

A senior U.S. official says bin Laden was killed by U.S. forces in a mansion outside the Pakistani capital of Islamabad along with other family members.

U.S. President Barack Obama is expected to address the nation shortly.

[Updated, 11:15 p.m. ET] Al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden was killed by U.S. forces in a mansion outside the Pakistani capital of Islamabad along with other family members, a senior U.S. official tells CNN.

Congressional and administration sources say U.S. officials have the body of bin Laden. Further details around his death were not immediately available.

Bin Laden was the leader of al Qaeda, the terrorist network behind the September 11, 2001, attacks on the United States.

U.S. President Barack Obama is expected to address the nation shortly.

[Updated, 10:55 p.m. ET] A woman whose mother was killed on American Airlines Flight 11 on September 11 expressed "relief" over reports that Osama bin Laden is dead.

In an e-mail to CNN, Carrie Lemack said: "Cannot express how this feels to my family, but relief is one word.  We hope we can now focus on all that that madman took, namely nearly 3,000 + innocent victims, and not on him."

[Updated, 10:55 p.m. ET] Osama bin Laden is dead, sources told CNN Sunday night.

Congressional and administration sources say U.S. officials have the body of bin Laden, who was reportedly killed in Afghanistan. The details about his death were not immediately available.

U.S. President Barack Obama is expected to address the nation shortly.

[Updated, 10:45 p.m. ET]  Osama bin Laden is dead, CNN's John King reported Sunday night, citing sources.

[Initial post, 10:09 p.m. ET] U.S. President Barack Obama is expected to make a statement Sunday night, tentatively at 10:30 p.m., the White House said. The subject of his address was not known.

Obama is expected to address national security in his speech, a source said.

soundoff (4,801 Responses)
  1. Jimmy

    Now imagine how many years ago he would already be dead and how many people would still be alive if America had not supported Al Qaeda during the Soviet War on Afghanistan. Hipocrisy rules!

    May 2, 2011 at 3:17 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Posting

    What perfect timing...right before the 2012 Election !!!
    Bravo America you did it...BS ~ THEN THE WAR IS OVER??? NOT
    If you all believe this well like the saying goes – I have Ocean front property – oh no I don't BP killed that too!!
    That was the whole point to go to war to kill the bad guy well then it's over and now we can live in peace?
    This is like a movie and we all get to watch, so remember what your seeing is most likely not real.


    May 2, 2011 at 3:17 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Jason

    I for one will quit eating things from the sea on the off chance I could consume one of the most horrible humans to take a breath. They should have loaded him on the space shuttle and shot him into outer space so he would not contaminate us.

    May 2, 2011 at 3:17 pm | Report abuse |
  4. None believer

    It's a hoax ! ! ! Osama bin Laden IS NOT DEAD ! The Obama Administration is creating an aversion for President's declinie in popularity. You do not have a burial at sea of the most wanted terrorist without proof – NO PICTURES! It's a big hoax. He's alive and well!

    May 2, 2011 at 3:17 pm | Report abuse |
    • David

      Just because they haven't released pictures does not mean that they don't exist...

      May 2, 2011 at 3:30 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Jon

    Typical idiots and politicians turning this into a political issue. Listen up people, neither President Bush nor President Obama did this by themselves it was a team effort with the military doing the bulk of the work. Neither president found Bin Laden, neither participated in the training that it took to enter that compound and neither pulled the trigger to fire the bullet that ended his life. President Obama gave the order to execute the plan, President Bush gave the order to initiate the search. Both men are great Americans who did what their country required of them at the time it was required. If you really think that either of these men had a map and pointed to a place and said "look here" or "I think he might be here," you're not only wrong you're probably to dumb to read this. If your going to try to give the credit to one person it should probably be to the recruiter of the young man that fired the bullet but don't you see how assinine that is? This is a proud day for America to say WE did it, not anyone person in particular, but WE THE PEOPLE finally got our man. Let this issue go and celebrate the death of one of history's worst villians. Thanks to the men in women in the armed forces and God Bless America

    May 2, 2011 at 3:18 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Chip

    We must hunt down and kill every bin Laden male heir, including the children!

    May 2, 2011 at 3:18 pm | Report abuse |
  7. A Muslim


    Sounding off as a muslim. First off, from an Islamic perspective - terrorism has no place in the religion. Submission (Islam) or any religion of God, condemn the killing and oppression, and particularly loathsome are those who kill in the name of God.

    While capital punishment is discouraged in Quran, in certain cases it serves justice. When an individual commits horrendous crimes, God tells us in Quran 5:33 that capital punishment is justified. Thus, the operation to kill Bin Laden, is not against God's law in Quran, and it is in the cause of justice from an Islamic perspective.

    Grossness of Murder
    [Quran 5:32] ... anyone who murders any person who had not committed murder or horrendous crimes, it shall be as if he murdered all the people. And anyone who spares a life it shall be as if he spared the lives of all the people. Our messengers went to them with clear proofs and revelations, but most of them, after all this, are still transgressing.

    [Quran 5:33] The just retribution for those who fight GOD and His messenger, and commit horrendous crimes, is to be killed, or crucified, or to have their hands and feet cut off on alternate sides, or to be banished from the land. This is to humiliate them in this life, then they suffer a far worse retribution in the Hereafter.

    As verse 5:33 says - the punishment from God is far worse for such evil people.

    More on what the Quran says about bin Laden's death: http://masjidtucson.org/current/islam_and_death_bin_laden.html

    May 2, 2011 at 3:19 pm | Report abuse |
  8. leciat

    according to shariah, if a Muslim is considered to be an apostate, he must not be buried as a Muslim. Indian Muslims, for example, refused to bury as Muslims the Islamic terrorists who committed the Mumbai attacks in 2008, as refusing to bury them as Muslims is the most powerful sign of rejecting terrorism.

    so why was he given an appropriate muslim burial?

    May 2, 2011 at 3:20 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Suzanne

    Bin Laden was a monster. His death via Navy Seals was the ultimate justice for all those he killed either directly or indirectly. By now he has found out that there are no virigins waiting for him, but a God who will judge and punish him correctly. Interesting that Bin Laden and Hitler were both declared dead on May 1st – Hitler in 1945 and Bin Laden in 2011. Lots more similarities between the two. Both were monsters and both took many lives. My hat is off to President Obama, the Navy Seals, the intelligence community and to all who played a role in bringing Bin Laden to a long overdue death.

    May 2, 2011 at 3:20 pm | Report abuse |
  10. andy

    ok, fantastic story. he must a been killed long time ago in some blast, attack or some thing and know need some publicity so they came up with this story. if us military killed him they never take any picture and they never show any evidence of his killing, if that is a reality they must make a movie of life time, they took him away 100 of miles and instead of buried him in ground where muslim supposed to be instead they buried him in the sea so they never could recover for any kind of evidence. they should get the story written by a movie writer....well if is true good job...

    May 2, 2011 at 3:20 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Marinemom0204

    Where are the pictures of Bin Laden's body? I think Bin Laden's death is a tad bit convenient for Obama when the US economy is in the tank, gas tank that is, joblessness, and the economy being as bad as it is, not to mention how low his approval rating is and oops..."here's my birth certificate." If I have anything to do with it, I'll promise you this, Obama will not be re-elected because I voted for him. I sort of liked the guy at first, but he's an idiot. Yeah, praise Obama now for Bin Laden. I want to see proof – oh, sorry, he's buried at sea along with the convenient body shield and his son. Bull crap!

    May 2, 2011 at 3:20 pm | Report abuse |
    • S&MAN

      Sure, and if they show you the body, you would claim it was somehow a fake. There IS a picture of him...DEAD..all over the internet. Google it!!

      May 2, 2011 at 3:32 pm | Report abuse |
  12. GoChiefs

    to CNN – sorry, clicked the abuse button by accident. No incident.

    May 2, 2011 at 3:21 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Susan

    Releasing a photo does nothing but INCITE Al Queda. The DNA is proof and they would not state it if it was not 100% confirmed. Anyone can modify a photograph. Wake up morons. I understand you cannot comprehend anything beyond the little narrow minded views. Some of the comments posted make me wonder about some people in this country. Thank you President Obama! and thanks to our troops and special forces. I am a veteran and I support our president.

    May 2, 2011 at 3:21 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Thor

    So, I guess, if the Pakistanis merely "gave us permission" to go in and kill him, then they really didn't help find him. The one guy/girl who connected the dots as to where he was AND the members of the TEAM who actually were at risk doing the job, should get the money all divided up with the actual shooter, and the actual dot connector getting the lionshare of the reward money offered by the government and the airlines. ...but... that's JUST their job right? We couldn't have any deckahands actually get the rewards for what they have done... couldn't we?

    May 2, 2011 at 3:22 pm | Report abuse |
  15. American

    We all no he is dead face the facts. What we should worry about now is the retaliation that comes with his death!

    May 2, 2011 at 3:22 pm | Report abuse |
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