The operation to kill Al Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden was carried out in Pakistan jointly by the US Navy Seals and America's Central Intelligence Agency (CIA).
The operation against Osama was launched in August 2010 on specific information by the CIA. The CIA taskforce, formed to tackle the Al Qaeda, put together bits of credible intelligence about the whereabouts of the Saudi-born extremist.
As suspected, Osama lived in Pakistan in a million-dollar mansion with seven-foot walls and not in a cave in Afghanistan as it was earlier talked about.
As the CIA began putting together a confirmatory report of his location in Pakistan's Abbottabad, a crack unit of the elite US Navy Seals began practising for the helicopter-borne assault, their most important mission ever.
Seals, meaning Sea, Air and Land teams, is the US Navy's principal special operations force and is a part of the Naval Special Warfare Command (NSWC) as well as the maritime component of the United States Special Operations Command (USSOCOM).
On April 29, the CIA confirmed Laden's location. The report was bolstered by the agency's large local strength in Pakistan and Afghanistan. US President Barack Obama officially cleared the final assault.
On May 1, 25 Seals took off in two helicopters and swept at low level into Abbottabad at 1.30 am and 2 am. The Pakistan government was not informed about the execution of the plan.
Under the command of the Joint Special Operations Command and in coordination with the CIA, the Seals commandos stormed the compound with assault rifles and sniper rifles and a 40 minute fight ensued.
Laden also had a weapon and he fired from it at the commandos. Finally, he was shot at least once in the head. One of the US helicopters was damaged in the operation. The Seals destroyed the chopper before leaving to ensure that no evidence was left.
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