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Middle East
Al-Zawahiri slams Arab leaders
Al-Qaeda's number two posts new audiotape on internet slamming Arab leaders over Gaza.
Last Modified: 20 Jul 2010 14:47 GMT
Al-Zawahiri hailed the 'victory' of the Taliban and mocked Obama for saying the group will be defeated

Ayman al-Zawahiri, al-Qaeda's number two, has branded Arab leaders "Zionists" for helping Israel's siege of the Gaza Strip.

In an audiotape posted online on Monday, al-Zawahiri said Arab government leaders allied to the West were more harmful to the Palestinians than Israel.

"These Arab Zionists with whom we live and exchange smiles ... are more dangerous than the Jewish Zionists," al-Zawahiri said in the audiotape posted on an Islamist website that stated the message was produced by al-Qaeda's Al-Fajr media arm.

'Shameful initiative'

Al-Qaeda's number two also slammed Arab leaders collectively for backing the Saudi-drafted peace initiative, which was first presented in 2002, offering Israel full recognition in return for its withdrawal from the occupied territories and a just settlement for refugees.

"Who were those who agreed collectively to hand most of Palestine to the Jews, and said that the refugees issue can only be settled in arrangements with the Jews?

"Were they not the Arab rulers in their shameful initiative," he asked.

Al-Zawahiri, who has a US bounty of $25m on his head, resurfaced last in December, when he criticised US President's Middle East policy, charging it was "humiliating" for Muslims and a "new stage in the Crusader and Zionist campaign."

In his new tape, he said: "Poor [Barack] Obama comes to Kabul pledging that Taliban will not return to power... Poor you, can you promise that your herds (of soldiers) will return safe to America?"

"You threaten the Taliban, you are just a puppet of the tyrants ... We'll see who will not return to Kabul because he will flee it hastily in fear."

"Obama, whether you admit it or not, Muslims have defeated you in Iraq and Afghanistan and will defeat you in Palestine, Somalia and the Islamic Maghreb," he added.

Source:
Agencies
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