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French Gen'l: U.S. Had Osama Within Reach

U.S.-led forces in Afghanistan had Osama bin Laden “within reach” on at least two occasions, but were unable to prevent him from slipping away, France’s top general said Wednesday. French chief of staff Gen. Henri Bentegeat, said the al-Qaida leader has evaded capture several times since 2002, but not recently. He didn’t say where bin Laden had been tracked down, and refused to comment on whether French special forces operating in southern Afghanistan were involved. “Several times the coalition has had Osama bin Laden directly within reach,” Bentegeat told reporters during a visit to the Afghan capital. “But between locating a person and arresting them there is a gap tied to all the uncertainties of all operations of this kind.” A spokeswoman for the U.S. military in Kabul had no immediate comment on the general’s remarks. Full Story

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