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Arabic TV Airs Al-Qaida Tape Warning US of More Attacks - 2004-02-25


An Arabic television network has broadcast an audio tape attributed to Osama bin Laden's top deputy that warns President Bush to prepare for more terror attacks on the United States.

In the tape -- aired today (Tuesday) by al-Jazeera television -- a voice the network identified as al-Qaida deputy Ayman al-Zawahiri warns Mr. Bush the attacks will come from the "same Islamic nation" responsible for the 2001 terror attacks on New York and Washington.

The voice also ridiculed White House assertions that two-thirds of al-Qaida operatives have either been killed or captured.

The White House did not address the latest tape specifically. But hours after the al-Jazeera broadcast, a White House spokesman called the war on terror ongoing and said President Bush is committed to pursuing all members of al-Qaida.

Earlier today, a separate tape broadcast on the al-Arabiya satellite network condemned France for its move to ban Islamic headscarves in public schools. The tape calls the ban a new sign of, quote, "Crusader hatred" it says Westerners harbor against Muslims.

Neither tape has been authenticated. But officials from both networks say the voice on both tapes sounds like previous audio tapes attributed to the Egyptian-born fugitive.

Meanwhile, in northwestern Pakistan, officials say army troops have detained at least 20 suspected foreign militants during an operation in remote tribal areas near the border with Afghanistan.

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