Pakistani authorities in Abbottabad are doing their best to keep unwanted visitors away from the demolition of Osama bin Laden's former home. NBC's Annabel Roberts reports.
Pakistani security personnel on Sunday completed the demolition of the compound where al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden was killed by U.S. forces last May.
"The process launched for demolishing the compound on Saturday evening has been completed on Sunday night. The whole structure of the building has been razed to the ground. It actually took some time as the process of removing demolition and removing the wreckage was going on same to same," a senior security official said in Abbottabad.
The official, who requested anonymity, said precautionary measures, including a curfew and heavy security around the compound, were taken to avoid any problems during the demolition. When asked why the demolition took place now, the official told NBC News that the razing of the structure had been planned soon after bin Laden's death.
"A number of meetings had taken place since the May 2 operation for demolishing the building, but the compound could not be demolished earlier due to difference in opinions among the officials concerned. It was finally decided to demolish the building and the timing for the process was chosen Saturday night," the official said.
A senior police officer said that an unannounced curfew in the town remained in place until late Sunday night.
To secure the area, Pakistan army soldiers and police personnel were deployed in large numbers to the area.
"The recent rockets' attack by unknown people on military installations in Abbottabad city had created serious concerns among the military authorities and local administration there," the police officer said.
The police officer, who requested anonymity, said the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Governor Barrister Masood Kausar was scheduled to visit Abbottabad during the day to see the demolition, but later canceled his trip for unknown reasons.
Local residents in Bilal Town said security measures were later relaxed when the last portion of the compound was razed to the ground using heavy machinery.
Future plans for the lot include the construction of "a nice park" -- with green areas and benches -- that will be built "within a month," a senior government official told NBC News.
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