Text size:

  • Small
  • Normal
  • Large
Osama bin Laden is seen in this April 1998 picture in Afghanistan.
Osama bin Laden is seen in this April 1998 picture in Afghanistan.

Bin Laden threatens US

Osama bin Laden threatens to kill any captured Americans if the US executes the 'mastermind' of the September 11 attacks.

CAIRO // Osama bin Laden threatened to kill any captured Americans if the US executes the self-professed mastermind of the September 11 attacks or any other al Qa'eda suspects. The US is still considering whether to put Khalid Sheik Mohammed and four of his fellow plotters on military tribunal for their role in the attacks. The Obama administration is also looking into recommendations for civilian trials, and is expected to announce a decision soon. In a brief 74-second audio tape aired on Al Jazeera television yesterday, bin Laden said if the US decides to execute any al Qa'eda suspects in its custody - and explicitly mentioned Khalid Sheik Mohammed - his terror network would kill American captives. He said such a decision "would mean the US has issued a death sentence against whoever of you becomes a prisoner in our hands." It was not immediately clear whether al Qa'eda currently has any US captives, but the Haqqani group - the Pakistan-based Taliban faction closest to al Qa'eda - is holding an American soldier it captured in eastern Afghanistan in June 2009. It released a video of him in December. Bin Laden said that the US president Barack Obama is following in the footsteps of his predecessor George W Bush by escalating the war in Afghanistan, being "unjust" to al Qa'eda prisoners and supporting Israel in its occupation of Palestinian land. In a veiled threat, bin Laden said Americans had previously thought their homeland was beyond the reach of his group until the September 11 attack. Khalid Sheik Mohammed, who was captured in Pakistan in 2003, is the most senior al Qa'eda operative in US custody. He is currently in detention at the US naval base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. In 2008, the US charged him with murder and war crimes in connection with the September 11 attacks. Pentagon officials have said they'll seek the death penalty.

* AP

Back to the top

More articles

Editor's Picks

 Iranian President Hassan Rouhani greeted by university students as he leaves Sistan University in Sistan and Baluchestan’s provincial capital of Zahedan on Tuesday, April 15, 2014. Maryam Rahmanian for The National

In Iran’s most troubled province, Rouhani hears pleas for change

Hassan Rounani aims to connect with residents of far-flung Sistan and Baluchestan province.

 Prince Bandar bin Sultan in Riyadh on March 3, 2007. Hassan Ammar / AFP Photo

Saudi Prince Bandar promised a victory he could not deliver

Saudi Arabia's controversial intelligence chief stepped down this week after rumours that his policies on Syria had fallen out of favour.

 Iranian President Hassan Rouhani greets supporters after his arrival in Zahedan, the regional capital of Sistan and Baluchestan province on Tuesday, April 15, 2014. During Mr Rouhani's two-day visit, he will tour several other cities and hold meetings with local scholars and entrepreneurs. Maryam Rahmanian for The National

On the road with Hassan Rouhani

Iran's president is touring some of Iran's most underdeveloped provinces. Foreign correspondent Yeganeh Salehi is traveling with him.

 Twitter photo of  Abdel Fattah El Sisi on the campaign trail on March 30. Photo courtesy-Twitter/@SisiCampaign

El Sisi rides a bicycle, kicks off social media storm

The photos and video created a huge buzz across social media networks, possibly a marker of a new era for Egypt.

 Friday is UN Mine Awareness Day and Omer Hassan, who does demining work in Iraqi Kurdistan, is doing all he can to teach people about the dangers posed by landmines. Louise Redvers for The National

A landmine nearly ended Omer’s life but he now works to end the threat of mines in Iraq

Omer Hassan does demining work in Iraqi Kurdistan and only has to show people his mangled leg to underscore the danger of mines. With the world marking UN Mine Awareness Day on Friday, his work is as important as ever as Iraq is one of the most mine-affected countries in the world.

 Turkey's Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Turkish spiritual leader Fethullah Gulen. AFP Photo

The inner workings of Gulen’s ‘parallel state’

Fethullah Gulen's followers are accused of trying to push Turkey's prime minister from power.


To add your event to The National listings, click here

Get the most from The National