CIA attack 'revenge for Mehsud'

In video message Jordanian says Khost blast avenged Pakistani Taliban leader's killing.

    Al-Balawi had apparently been recruited by Jordanian intelligence before the CIA Khost base attack

    The eighth victim of the suicide attack was a Jordanian intelligence officer, identified by Jordan's state news agency Petra as Captain Sharif Ali bin Zeid.

    Mehsud retaliation

    Al-Balawi said in the video: "We say that we will never forget the blood of our Emir Baitullah Mehsud, God's mercy on him.

    "To retaliate for his death in the United States and outside the United States will remain an obligation on all emigrants who were harboured by Baitullah Mehsud."

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    Mehsud was the leader of the Pakistani Taliban umbrella organisation, the Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan, and was blamed for numerous suicide bombings and other attacks in the country.

    He was initially reported dead after a missile fired by a US drone hit his house in the Zangar area of South Waziristan on August 5 last year, but it was not until later that month that the group acknowledged his death.

    Hakimullah Mehsud, the Pakistani Taliban commander who succeeded Baitullah Mehsud as the leader of the umbrella group, is shown sitting next to al-Balawi in Saturday's video. 

    "God willing his successor the Emir of Pakistan's Taliban Hakimullah will go on the same methodology and the same path until we achieve victory or meet the same fate like that of Hamza Abdul Muttaleb," al-Balawi said.

    Al Jazeera's Kamal Hyder, reporting from Swat valley, said that the video showed "there was clearly a link between the Pakistani Taliban, headed by Hakimullah Mehsud, and some of the al-Qaeda elements operating in the area".

    "This was a video that was expected, everyone was told al-Balawi had recorded a message before he went on this mission."

    Father speaks out

    Following the release of the video, Khalil al-Balawi, Balawi’s father, spoke from his home in the Jordanian capital, Amman and confirmed that it showed his son, saying he was not astonished by what his son had done.

    "We are not surprised, fighting the arrogant, unjust, haughty and tyrant American who kills civilians and innocent people makes the whole Islamic world hate America ... I say that Hammam sacrificed his body and soul for the oppressed.

    "Khalil al-Balawi also harshly criticised intelligence officials for his son’s change. "I blame the agencies that recruited him, and changed him," he said.

    "They changed him. They turned him from a human, a doctor, to a person with a heart full of negative and hostile emotions toward others."

    SOURCE: Al Jazeera


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