Bin Laden death report on Islamist website causes market fluctuations and denials of non event
Attention grabbing report leads to media speculation and forums for Al Qaeda spokesmen
April 29, 2005
MIM: In a classic example of media manipulation a report on an Islamist website which said that Bin Laden was dead has led to a spate of articles , quoting from people like Yasser Al Sirri, who is described as " a London based Islamist activist". Al Sirri is presently walking the streets of London free on bail, and was accused of providing the fake press credentials which Al Qaeda operative used to gain access to Northern Alliance leader Ahmed Shah Masood. The terrorists detonated a bomb hidden is a camera which killed Masood. British judges considered him an 'unwitting accomplice and he was released, but rearrested again on an extradition warrant issued by the United States. The US accuses him of sending money to the family of Omar Abdel Rahman in Afghanistan. (Omar Abdel Rahman was the mastermind behind the 1993 WTC bombing and is in prison for life in the US.)
DUBAI: A posting on an Islamist web site stirred speculation over the fate of Al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden, and prompted a flurry of denials on Friday that the world's most wanted man was dead.
The entry on www.islam-minbar.net Web site began by saying there was news bin Laden had died but went on to say he was alive but, as a human being, could die any time and that Muslims should be prepared for that when it happens. The unidentified author seemed to be trying to draw readers to his posting with a headline that bin Laden was dead.
London-based Islamist activist Yasser al-Serri, who monitors Web sites, said bin Laden "is alive" and was believed to have recently recorded a new video tape which may be on its way for broadcasting. "The headline of the posting did create confusion, but I believe the person who posted it wanted to urge Muslim youths to continue jihad (holy war) even if bin Laden died," Serri told Reuters by telephone from London.
Western diplomats in Islamabad cast doubt on the reports, apparently circulating on more than one Middle East Web site. Western intelligence officials usually say they believe bin Laden is holed up somewhere in the mountainous frontier region between Pakistan and Afghanistan.
In March, Pakistan's President Pervez Musharraf told the BBC that interrogations of captured Al Qaeda members and electronic surveillance had led Pakistani security forces to believe they "knew roughly the area where he possibly could be ... maybe about 10 months ago".
But Musharraf said the trail had since gone cold.
The most recent video of bin Laden appeared on Oct 30, four days before the US election. The Saudi-born militant derided President George W Bush and warned of a new Sept 11-style attack. reuters
DUBAI (Reuters) - A posting on an Islamist Web site which appeared to report the death of al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden was misleading, the full text of the Internet article makes clear.
The Web site posting stirred market speculation on Friday.
The posting on a Web site often used by Islamists began by saying there was news bin Laden had died but then went on to say that the fugitive militant could die at any time and Muslims should be prepared.
The unidentified author appeared to be trying to attract readers to his posting with the headline reporting bin Laden's death. There was no evidence bin Laden had died
Posted on: Dec 31, 1969 6:00pm
LONDON (July 30, 2002 12:03 p.m. EDT) - Britain has decided there is not enough evidence to begin extradition proceedings against an Egyptian activist wanted by the United States, which says he sent money to Afghanistan to sponsor terrorism.
Yasser el-Sirri, who has been free on bail, was ordered discharged Monday at Bow Street magistrates court after Home Secretary David Blunkett decided there was not enough evidence.
The Egyptian, who has lived in Britain since 1994, had been arrested in October and charged with conspiring to assassinate Afghan northern alliance leader Ahmed Shah Massood. Massood was mortally wounded in Afghanistan by two suicide bombers posing as journalists on Sept. 9.
British prosecutors accused el-Sirri of using his organization to give fake press credentials for the two men who detonated a bomb hidden in their camera while they pretended to interview Massood. Charges against el-Sirri were dropped, however, when a London judge ruled he was an unwitting accomplice.
He was immediately re-arrested on a U.S. extradition warrant, which alleges he sent the money to Afghanistan in May 2001, knowing it was to be used to sponsor terrorism within the United States.
El-Sirri was sentenced to death in absentia in Egypt in 1994 for his alleged involvement with a terrorist group blamed for the assassination of President Anwar Sadat.
El-Sirri, 39, runs the Islamic Observation Centre bookshop in Paddington, central London and has always protested his innocence.
The U.S. warrant alleged el-Sirri sent money to the Afghanistan-based family of Omar Abdel-Rahman, a Muslim cleric serving a life sentence in the United States for plotting to blow up New York City landmarks in the 1990s.
Lawyers for el-Sirri said he ran an Islamic organization that regularly sent money to the families of Islamic prisoners. They said the money sent to Afghanistan amounted to a few hundred dollars and was part of his humanitarian work.
MIM: A false report of death also seems to have served the purposes of 'Abdullah Mahsud' who intended to 'confuse the troops that wanted to hunt him down'. The reliability of the report is questionable but it is worth noting that the not dead terrorist is alive and well in Waziristan which is known as the primary address for the regions terrorists, and begs the question as to why Pakistan is having such a hard time hunting them down. http://indiamonitor.com/news/readNews.jsp?ni=7008
Abdullah Mahsud issues "jehad" leaflet
by Rahimullah Yusufzai Wednesday April 27, 2005,PESHAWAR: A few days after Corps Commander Peshawar Lt Gen Safdar Hussain declared him alive, most wanted tribal militant Abdullah Mahsud has announced his presence by sending out a leaflet containing his views on "jehad" and urging fellow Muslims to take up arms before it is too late.
According to the leaflet, Abdullah Mahsud is based in North Waziristan, which borders his native South Waziristan. There is no other information in the leaflet about him. The cyclostyled Urdu leaflet says it is incumbent upon every Muslim to spread its message to other Muslims. Another slogan on the leaflet asks Muslims to wage Jehad and don't miss the caravan.
The leaflet was sent to The News in an envelope.
"Another side of the picture is also present" is the title of the leaflet. In it, Abdullah Mahsud quotes widely from various religious scholars through the ages to justify "jehad" against "enemies of Islam." He also criticizes those Ulema who are siding with President General Pervez Musharraf, who in turn is accused of supporting the "infidel" US and its allies to destroy Islamic nations and occupy their energy and other resources.
Abdullah Mahsud is on the run after military operations in South Waziristan. One recent report even claimed he was dead. But the corps commander Peshawar said the other day that Abdullah Mahsud had publicized false report of his death in newspapers to confuse troops deployed in the area to hunt him down. http://indiamonitor.com/news/readNews.jsp?ni=6805