DNA Tests were indispensable to know whether the man killed in a compound in Pakistan was really the most infamous and wanted terrorist Osama Bin Laden, also known as Usuma Bin Laden. The operation took place on the 2nd of May 2011. The top secret investigation and subsequent killing of Bin Laden could not be a closed case until there was absolute certainty that the right man had been killed.

Osama bin Laden, of Saudi Origin is said to have been born in May, 1957. He revealed this in on of his interviews. He studied engineering at university but his main interest was religion. He later went on to marry a total of 6 wives and had a total of 26 children. His ideology was extremist, fundamentalist, resulting in the horrific attacks of September the 11th.

DNA Testing and Osama Bin Laden

To identify the body DNA testing was used. But the people in charge began with photos. The Intelligence had a collection of several photos which could be used to identify the body and establish whether they really belonged to Usuma. The terrorist had been shot in the head, so it is highly likely that digital reconstruction where required of photos taken directly from the corpse of the terrorist. The photos were not released because they were too graphic and could adversely affect people who saw them. There is moreover, the risk of inciting violence from those who support Bin laden and Al Qaeda.

Biometric techniques were also used to confirm the identity. This typically involves fingerprinting.

DNA Testing and Osama Bin Laden

DNA testing is by far the most accurate and reliable way of identifying someone. In the case of Osama Bin Laden, DNA samples were taken from the corpse and compared to Bin Laden’s known relatives. If a biological relationship is confirmed, then this means the corpse can be identified as Bin Laden’s. What is important with relationship DNA tests involving family members is the proximity of relationship. Bin Laden’s sister had recently passed away from cancer in a hospital in Massachusetts. DNA samples were taken from her body and used to establish whether the DNA taken from the body belonged to her brother (ie Bin Laden). Of course, despite DNA testing evidence, conspiracy theories have still arisen; people claim Bin Laden is still alive or fraudulent photos of the man “alive” circulating on internet.

The results of the DNA test confirmed with a high degree of accuracy, 99.9%, that the man killed was Bin Laden.

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