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World - Asia/Pacific

Taliban wants Bin Laden to stop anti-U.S. threats

bin Laden
Bin Laden  
August 24, 1998
Web posted at: 8:21 a.m. EDT (1221 GMT)

ISLAMABAD, Pakistan (CNN) -- Osama Bin Laden has agreed to obey a call by Afghanistan's Islamic fundamentalist Taliban rulers to stop making threats against the United States, according to an Afghan news agency report.

The Pakistan-based Afghan Islamic Press quoted Taliban leader Mullah Mohammad Omar as saying on Monday that he had expressed his anger to Bin Laden -- declared a terrorist by Washington -- over his repeated threats of retaliation against the United States.

 ALSO:
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  • Last week, after the United States launched missile attacks against alleged terrorist targets in Afghanistan and Sudan, Bin Laden said that a war had started.

    "I sent a message to Bin Laden yesterday making it clear to him not to make military and political statements against anyone from our soil," Omar told AIP from his headquarters in the southern Afghan city of Kandahar.

    "I am angry because Osama is making anti-American statements from our soil and I stressed on him not to do so," he said. "He (Bin Laden) has broken his promise of not using our soil for making such statements because he had been stopped from doing so in the past as well."

    Bin Laden said to 'obey' Taliban order

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    Omar said Bin Laden, who is said to be in Afghanistan, had agreed to obey the Taliban's instructions and promised not to make any further statements against America.

    The Taliban condemned the United States for its attacks, last Thursday, in which at least 21 people were killed in Khost, near the Pakistani border.

    The Taliban -- who control most of war-torn Afghanistan and have implemented what they see as a strict version of Islamic religious doctrine -- say they will not turn over Bin Laden to the United States.

    Bin Laden, who denies involvement in the August 7 East Africa U.S. Embassy bombings, has been reprimanded in the past by Taliban authorities for making anti-American statements.

    U.S. President Clinton said he ordered the cruise missile strikes because he had "convincing evidence" that Bin Laden's group had played a key role in the bomb attacks on the U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania, where 263 people were killed.

    Bin Laden, born to a wealthy Saudi family but stripped of his citizenship, has lived in exile first in Yemen, then Sudan and now in Afghanistan.

    He has been linked to two previous attacks on Americans in Saudi Arabia and has vowed to wage Jihad (holy struggle) against U.S. forces there because of American support for Israel and what he calls U.S. "occupation" of Saudi Arabia, the country in which Islam's two most sacred shrines are located.

    Correspondent Kasra Naji and Reuters contributed to this report.


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