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Arabic network claims taped 9/11 confessions

Ramzi Binalshibh, left, and Khalid Shaikh Mohammad
Ramzi Binalshibh, left, and Khalid Shaikh Mohammad  

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (CNN) -- The Arabic television news network Al-Jazeera said Thursday it has taped confessions of two al Qaeda members claiming responsibility for the September 11 attacks on behalf of Osama bin Laden's terror group.

Al-Jazeera said the men, both of whom are wanted by the U.S. government, spell out how they planned and executed the attacks. It said it would play their statements next week as part of a documentary it is airing.

"In the second part of this documentary, there will be the first direct confession as to how al Qaeda planned and executed September 11," Al-Jazeera journalist Yosri Fouda said in the first part of the documentary, which began airing Thursday.

One of the al Qaeda members on the tape was said to be Ramzi Binalshibh, a Yemeni national who belonged to the al Qaeda cell in Hamburg, Germany, that played a major role in planning the attacks. Lead hijacker Mohamed Atta was a member of that same cell.

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U.S. authorities have said they believe Binalshibh was to be on one of the hijacked planes but could not obtain a U.S. visa to enter the country. Authorities say he eventually made his way to Pakistan and from there entered Afghanistan.

The other terrorist on the Al-Jazeera tape was identified as Khalid Shaikh Mohammad, a Kuwaiti who is on the United States "most wanted" terrorist list. Mohammad is believed to have been one of the primary planners behind the September 11 attacks, authorities have said.

Mohammad is the uncle of Ramzi Yousef, the convicted mastermind behind the 1993 World Trade Center bombing who is now serving time in a U.S. prison.

Mohammad was indicted in 1996 for plotting to bomb U.S. airliners flying from southeast Asia to the United States.

Al-Jazeera said the interviews with the two men were conducted in Karachi, Pakistan. Sources familiar with the interviews told CNN that both men were interviewed this summer.




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