The former lawyer for the Pakistani doctor who helped the Central Intelligence Agency track down Osama bin Laden was killed Tuesday.
Samiullah Afridi was shot and killed while returning to his home in Peshawar, according to Reuters. He quit representing Dr. Shakil Afridi in 2014, after receiving threats. He left Pakistan last November and had only recently returned. They are not related.
Two Pakistani militant groups claimed responsibility for the attack, Jamaat-ul-Ahrar and Jundullah.
Al Jazeera cites a statement by Taliban-linked Jamaat-ul-Ahrar, saying it “accepts responsibility for the attack on Samiullah, the lawyer of Shakil Afridi, who was co-operating with the killers of Sheikh Osama bin Laden. The enemy should remember that we will kill each and every one of the killers of each of our brothers.”
Afridi helped the intelligence agency track down the architect of the Sept. 11 attacks in a compound in Abottobad through a fake vaccination campaign. It was intended to obtain the DNA of bin Laden’s family and led to his killing in a Navy SEAL raid in 2011.
According to CBS News, Afridi was arrested for helping Islamic militants, charges unrelated to his work with the CIA. But Pakistan expert Marvin Weinbaum previously told The Daily Caller News Foundation it was Pakistan’s way of retaliating for the U.S. conducting the raid covertly. (RELATED: Pakistani Ambassador Claims High Cooperation With US)
After Afridi was sentenced to 33 years in prison, congressional leaders threatened to withhold $1 million in aid to Pakistan for each year of Dr. Afridi’s term. The sentence was overturned in 2013, and Afridi remains in jail and awaiting trial.