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Al Qaeda Tape Lauds London Blasts

July 07, 2006|From the Chicago Tribune

LONDON — As Britain prepared to mark the first anniversary today of the London terrorist attacks that killed 52 commuters, so did Al Qaeda's propaganda network. It issued a videotape that was aired Thursday evening on the satellite television channel Al Jazeera.

On the tape, Shahzad Tanweer, 22, who detonated the bomb on a subway train near the Aldgate Underground station, killing himself and six others, said the attacks would continue "until you pull your forces out of Afghanistan and Iraq."

Tanweer, a university dropout from Leeds, wore a scruffy beard and red-checked head scarf and spoke in the accent of his native Yorkshire.

The tape also includes separate footage of Ayman Zawahiri, Al Qaeda's second in command, who quotes Osama bin Laden speaking approvingly of the London attacks and hinting at Al Qaeda involvement.

The format is similar to that of a tape released in September, in which Mohamed Sidique Khan, 30, the ringleader of the London cell, declared war on Britain and warned of more attacks. Khan and Tanweer visited Pakistan in 2004, where they may have had contact with Al Qaeda.

Although Al Qaeda seems eager to take responsibility for the attack, British police have been unable to find any direct link between the terrorist network and the London bombers.

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