al-Qaeda leadership confirms Bin Laden is dead, says it will release audio recording
WASHINGTON, D.C. (BNO NEWS) — The ‘general command’ of al-Qaeda on Friday confirmed that its leader Osama bin Laden was killed during a U.S. operation in Pakistan.
Friday’s statement is the first official confirmation from the militant group itself and calls on its followers for revenge attacks and confirmed the existence of a soon-to-be-released audio tape that Bin Laden recorded shortly before his death.
“We stress that the blood of mujahid (Muslim fighter) sheikh Osama bin Laden, may God have mercy on him, is precious to us and all Muslims and will not go in vain,” the statement said. “We will remain, God willing, a curse that chases the Americans and their allies inside and outside their country.”
The statement, which was written on Tuesday, was published on a Jihadist website on Friday that is known to frequently publish statements and other material from al-Qaeda and affiliated organizations. The authenticity of the material published on the website is usually not disputed.
The general command of al-Qaeda called upon Muslims in Pakistan to rise up against its leaders. “We call upon Muslim people in Pakistan, the land where Sheikh Osama was killed, to revolt and rise up to wash off this shame that was caused by a handful of traitors and thieves who have sold everything to the enemies of the nation, and disregarded the feelings of their people,” the statement said, referring to Pakistan’s leadership.
The statement also confirms the existence of a final audio tape which was recorded by Bin Laden a week before his death and discusses the revolutions in Tunisia and Egypt. “It includes greetings, advice and guidance, and we will publish it soon,” the statement said.
In Bin Laden’s most recent audio recording, which was released in January, the al-Qaeda leader said the release of French hostages would depend on the pullout of French soldiers in Afghanistan.
Bin Laden, who is believed to have ordered the attacks of September 11, 2001, was killed on Sunday during a secret U.S. mission at a compound in the Pakistani city of Abbottabad. It is believed to be a major blow to the organization and was welcomed by leaders around the world.
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