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CIA authenticates bin Laden's new tape
www.chinaview.cn 2006-01-20 08:21:14

    WASHINGTON, Jan. 19 (Xinhuanet) -- Analysts at the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) believed that the voice on a tape, aired earlier Thursday by Arab television station Al Jazeera, was that of Osama bin Laden, an agency official said.

    The official, speaking anonymously, said that following technical analysis, the CIA determined that the voice on the tape was that of bin Laden, chief of the al Qaeda terrorist organization.

    Bin Laden warned in the tape that attacks were under preparations against the United States and its allies, and offered a truce in response to U.S. public opinion favoring withdrawal American troops from Iraq. "We don't mind offering you a long-term truce on fair conditions that we adhere to," he said in the tape.

    He said both sides could "enjoy security and stability under this truce so we can build Iraq and Afghanistan, which have been destroyed in this war."

    Speaking on the Fox News channel, Vice President Dick Cheney said he believed the truce offer was a ploy and that it was too early to draw any conclusions.

    "I'm not sure what he's offering by way of a truce. I don't think anybody would believe him ... It sounds to me like it's some kind of a ploy, but again not having seen the entire text or validated the tape and the timing of it, I'm reluctant to draw any conclusions," he said.

    At a luncheon speech in New York on Thursday, Cheney warned that the United States still faced significant threats from terrorists attempting to establish a radical Islamic empire.

    White House spokesman Scott McClellan said President George W. Bush had been informed about the tape, and that the United States would not negotiate with terrorists.

    "Clearly the al Qaeda leaders and other terrorists are on the run, they're under a lot of pressure. We do not negotiate with terrorists, we put them out of business," he said.

    The Department of Homeland Security had no plan to raise the country's security alert level in response to the tape, department officials said. Enditem

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