New York: Osama bin Laden was "not informed" about the militant outfit Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan's plans to carry out the May 2010 bombing of Times Square, according a cache of letters and other documents recovered from his Abbottabad hideout.

The documents were released on Thursday the Combating Terrorism Center at the United States Military Academy at West Point.

Dating from September 2006 to April 2011, the documents include 17 letters totaling 175 pages.

In letters written by bin Laden, he makes "far from flattering" references about Tehrik-e Taliban Pakistan, which is believed to be one of Al Qaeda's primary partners in the region.

The documents "make it clear that bin Ladin was not informed of the TTP's planned bombing of Times Square in New York City, a failed attack on US soil attempted by Faisal Shahzad in May 2010.

Bin Ladin was following Shahzad's trial in the news and was disappointed by his performance, which he thought distorted the image of the jihadis," the documents, in which the slain Qaeda leader's name has been spelt as 'Ladin' said.

In one of the letters that bin Laden wrote, he says that during the trial Shahzad was asked why he betrayed America by planning an attack against it when he had taken an oath as US citizen and vowed to protect the country.

To this Shahzad had replied that he had "lied" when he took the oath. Bin Laden was not happy with Shahzad lying under oath.

"It does not escape you (Shaykh Atiyya) that (Shahzad's lie) amounts to betrayal (ghadr) and does not fall under permissible lying to (evade) the enemy (during times of war)...please request from our Pakistani Taliban brothers to redress this matter..," bin Laden wrote in the letter.

In what appears to be a strange comment coming from a man who was planning terror attacks against America till before he died, bin Laden says in the letter that when a person becomes a US citizen, he takes an oath "swearing not to harm America."

He said people working with him and in Qaeda's affiliates should be made aware of this fact.

"Unless this matter is addressed, its negative consequences are known to you. (We must therefore act swiftly) to remove the suspicion that jihadis voliate their oath and engage in ghadr (betrayal)," bin Laden said, making clear that he was worried that jihadis violating their oaths would have negative consequences for Al Qaeda's image.

The documents say that it was bin Laden's rationale that those who had not taken oath to harm America should be asked to carry out operations against the country.

"Underlying bin Laden's thinking is a distinction between a visa (ishara), acquired citizenship - which involves taking an oath - and citizenship by birth - which does not entail taking an oath. From an Islamic law perspective, it is not lawful to violate one's oath," the documents said.

"Accordingly bin Ladin wanted to promote the image that jihadis are disciplined and conform to Islamic law. Faisal Shahzad's boasting that he lied during his oath not to harm the United States, therefore, is antiethical to the image of jihadis that bin Ladin wanted the world to see," the document added.

In making this observation, the documents say bin Laden would have had in mind a "debate" between then Qaeda second-in-command Ayman al-Zawahiri and his former mentor Sayyid Imam al-Sharif, who went by the name 'Dr Fadl'.

Fadl "reneged on his jihadi views and among the accusations he made was that the 9/11 hijackers violated the terms of their visa, interpreting it as a form of aman (safe passage) from an Islamic law of war perspective," a footnote in the documents released said.

It added that for bin Laden, a Muslim is bound by an oath he has taken, and a visa or citizenship by birth do not qualify as an oath.

(Agencies)

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