Al-Qaeda’s main terrorist base in mountain region Tora Bora, at a distance of 55 km towards Jelalabad has been captured by the Northern Alliance. This was reported by RIA ‘Novosti’ referring to CBS information from Kabul. The battle was been carried long and had a variable success. Though, finally, anti-Taliban forces managed to capture caves of the lowest level. According to Mojahedi’s descriptions, the entrance to the caves is very narrow, so only one person could hardly squeeze into it. Though, inside, there is much space, ammunition depots and living rooms are situated there. Some Arabs and their families’ members were taken prisoner, though Osama bin Laden is not among them. He seems to have moved to Pakistan, where their track most likely will be lost. Local Pashtun tribes would regard it as honour to grant asylum to the “fighter against infidels.” Washington confirms information, that bin Laden has left Afghan territory. According to special spokesman for US Department of State, bin Laden most likely left Afghanistan by a vessel belonging to Al-Qaeda. According to ABC TV channel, at the moment US Armed Forces are searching for 23 trade vessels, supposedly belonging or controlled by Al-Qaeda. Information about Al-Qaeda possessing trade vessels was confirmed by Norwegian authorities. It is not known where the vessels are located at the moment. Washington cannot exclude they could be used to evacuate terrorist number one and his surroundings from Afghanistan. According to US intelligence’s agents quoted by the TV channel, they managed to find several vessels, while US submarines with commandos on board are ready to start military actions in sea any moment. If some hostile signals are heard from the trade vessels, US naval forces will be ordered to annihilate them, ABC reports. The terrorist number one’s disappearance seriously damaged US prestige, because the task of the military operation in Afghanistan – to smash Al-Qaeda and to take prisoner or to annihilate bin Laden have not been completely fulfilled.
Dmitry Litvinovich PRAVDA.Ru
Read the original in Russian: http://www.pravda.ru/main/2001/12/07/34623.html
According to Russian officials, the detainees are employees of the private security company who were on their way to Latin America via Minsk and Istanbul. Lukashenko calls Russian officials liars