11-22-2001, 09:53 AM #1ptbyjason Guest
Taliban: Time to 'Forget' Attacks
By Haroon Rashid
Associated Press Writer
Thursday, November 22, 2001; 8:53 AM
SPINBOLDAK, Afghanistan –– A Taliban spokesman said the world should move on and forget about the Sept. 11 attacks in the United States, focusing instead on U.S. actions in Afghanistan. That drew a sharp retort from a senior U.S. official, who said the Taliban movement itself will soon be forgotten.
Syed Tayyab Agha, spokesman for Taliban supreme leader Mullah Mohammed Omar, told foreign reporters that concern about the Sept. 11 attacks, which claimed thousands of lives, has been superseded by U.S. airstrikes that "are killing daily our innocent people."
"You should forget the Sept. 11 attacks because now there is a new fighting against Muslims and Islam, and the international and global terrorists like America and Britain, they are killing daily our innocent people," Agha said.
He said the deadly hijackings were carried out by people in the United States – not the Taliban – and were "the problem of (President) Bush and (British Prime Minister) Tony Blair."
"This is not our problem," Agha added.
In Washington, Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz responded to the Taliban comments, saying, "They suggested that we should forget about Sept. 11 and move on, and I can assure them we will not forget about Sept. 11."
"We are moving on, and I think before long the world will forget about the Taliban," Wolfowitz said at the daily Pentagon briefing.
Bush launched the airstrikes Oct. 7 after the Taliban refused to surrender the chief suspect in the Sept. 11 attacks, Osama bin Laden.
Agha claimed the Taliban have lost contact with bin Laden and that he is no longer under the militia's control.
"We have no idea where he is," Agha said. "There is no relation right now. There is no communication."
In the past two weeks, the Taliban have lost most of Afghanistan to forces that oppose them. Agha said he knew of no members of bin Laden's al-Qaida network in areas under Taliban control and that contact with them had been lost "due to their communication problems."
Agha spoke to a group of foreign reporters escorted by the Taliban to this dusty town 9 miles from the border with Pakistan. The trip was aimed at convincing reporters that the Taliban still control their home base in the south.
Agha said the Taliban would defend territory they still control. He said Omar, the group's supreme leader, was in a secret location in the Kandahar area and would never relinquish control of the city where the Islamic movement was born in 1992.
"We will try our best and we will defend our nation ... and we will not give any chance to anybody to disturb our Islamic rule in Kandahar and other provinces," he said.
11-22-2001, 02:46 PM #2
These stories absolutely enrage me!! Arrrgghhhhh!!!!!!
11-25-2001, 06:17 PM #3
Another few days and we can forget about the Taliban.
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