Al Qaeda confirms Osama’s death (Lead)

May 7th, 2011 - 2:05 am ICT by IANS  

Islamabad, May 7 (IANS) Al Qaeda has confirmed the death of its chief Osama Bin Laden in a statement posted on jihadist internet forums.

Osama’s death would be a “curse” for the US and urged an uprising in Pakistan, BBC quoted the statement as saying.

The statement said his blood would not be “wasted” and Al Qaeda would continue to attack the US and its allies.

Osama was killed May 2 in a US commando operation in his hideout in Abbottabad near the Pakistani capital.

The covert raid was carried out without the prior knowledge of the Pakistani authorities, increasing tension between the two countries.

Several rallies were held in Pakistan Friday in protest, BBC reported. Thousands marched through central Karachi in the biggest such rally there in years, it said. They chanted slogans praising Osama - calling him a guardian of Islam.

The statement published on jihadist web forums, signed by “the general leadership” of Al Qaeda, said an audiotape would be released of Osama speaking a week before his death.

“(His blood) will remain, with permission from Allah, the Almighty, a curse that chases the Americans and their agents, and goes after them inside and outside their countries,” it warned.

“Their happiness will turn into sorrow, and their blood will be mixed with their tears. We call upon our Muslim people in Pakistan, on whose land Sheikh Osama was killed, to rise up and revolt.

“Before the sheikh passed from this world and before he could share with the Islamic nation in its joys over its revolutions in the face of the oppressors, he recorded a voice recording of congratulations and advice which we will publish soon, God willing,” BBC quoted the statement as saying.

Although US forces buried Osama’s body at sea, the statement warned the US that “multiple gates of evil” would be opened on them if they failed to hand over the corpse to his family. It incited Muslims to take action should the Americans mistreat the body or any of his captive family members.

It acknowledged the US was responsible for his death, and also noted that he had been killed by “treacherous infidel bullets”.

White House spokesman Jay Carney said it was “aware” of the statement.

“What it does is acknowledge the obvious, which is that Osama Bin Laden was killed by US forces,” BBC quoted him as saying.

“We are quite aware of the potential for (militant) activity and are highly vigilant on that matter for that reason,” he added.

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