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Osama bin Laden: NYC’s Pakistanis shocked, pained

Pakistanis in New York express anger and surprise over bin Laden hiding “in plain sight.”

Many in the U.S. are reeling over news that Osama bin Laden was discovered living among Pakistani military officials, just miles away from the capital city. And that same frustration was echoed among Pakistani Americans on the streets of New York yesterday.

“I’m surprised he was in plain sight,” said Staten Island attorney Asim Rehman, 36. “It raises a lot of questions.”

“The president of Pakistan is corrupt. He’s a criminal,” said Irshad Chaudry, 57, who was born in Pakistan but now lives in Brighton Beach. “There is no electricity, no gas, no water — the poor people have nothing.”

Some U.S. senators are calling for the end of $1.3 billion in American aid to Pakistan — and Chaudry couldn’t agree more.

“We shouldn’t give one cent to Pakistan,” said Chaudry. “Aid only goes to the rich and the politicians who have millions of dollars.”

Community activist Aliya Qurasishi, 34, of Manhattan, also had questions for the Pakistani government.

“I feel the government falls short on what it delivers to its people,” said Qurasishi. “I don’t think I should be ashamed of my culture. ... It would be great if we could share our culture and not just defend it.”

Follow Emily Anne Epstein on Twitter at @EmilyatMetro.

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