Osama bin Laden is dead and his body has been recovered by U.S. authorities, U.S. officials said on Sunday.
President Barack Obama was to make the dramatic announcement shortly in a hastily called, late-night appearance at the White House.
U.S. officials said that after searching in vain for the al Qaeda leader since he disappeared in Afghanistan in late 2001.
He had been the subject of a search since he eluded U.S. soldiers and Afghan militia forces in a large-scale assault on the Tora Bora mountains in 2001. The trail quickly went cold after he disappeared and many intelligence officials believed he had been hiding in Pakistan.
While in hiding, bin Laden had taunted the West and advocated his militant Islamist views in videotapes spirited from his hideaway.
Besides September 11, Washington has also linked bin Laden to a string of attacks -- including the 1998 bombings of American embassies in Kenya and Tanzania and the 2000 bombing of the warship USS Cole in Yemen.
Bin Laden was apparently killed in a mansion outside of Islamabad Pakistan with other family members CNN said