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Al Qaeda leader urges Libya to adopt Islamic law, beware of the West

By the CNN Wire Staff
updated 12:56 PM EDT, Wed October 12, 2011
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Al Qaeda's leader appears in a video posted on Islamist websites
  • Ayman al-Zawahiri tells Libyans they should be "careful of Western plots"
  • He urges Algerians to rise up against their government
  • Al-Zawahiri has appeared in videos several times this year

(CNN) -- In his latest video, al Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri congratulated the Libyan people on their victory against dictator Moammar Gadhafi but warned them against Western manipulation as they forge ahead in building a new nation.

Osama bin Laden's successor said Libyans should move quickly to establish Sharia, or Islamic law.

"Be careful of the plots of the West and its agents as you are building your new state and do not allow them to trick you and steal your sacrifices and suffering," al-Zawahiri said in the video posted on Islamist websites. "And be sure to take the first, most important step for reform and apply Sharia.

"If the West talks about extremists and militants, they are talking about the honest and the free who defend their religion, sanctities, families and countries," he said.

Appearing in white robes in front of a green backdrop, al-Zawahiri urged Algerians to follow the examples of their neighbors and rise up against President Abdelaziz Bouteflika.

"I call upon the Algerian people to follow in the footsteps of your brothers in Libya and Tunisia and to revolt against your tyrant," he said.

The latest message surfaced a month after an hour-long video was posted on Qaeda websites that included an audio broadcast purportedly from al-Zawahiri and a video message from bin Laden, recorded before his death in May. The message was apparently released to coincide with the 10th anniversary of the September 11, 2001, terror attacks.

Al-Zawahiri also appeared in video messages earlier this year -- one eulogizing bin Laden in June and another, in July, that slammed Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad and praised the anti-government protesters.

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