Bin Laden determined to strike against U.S.-Tenet
By Tabassum Zakaria
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Saudi exile Osama bin Laden is determined to strike further blows against America and appears to be widening his web of connections to anti-U.S. groups, CIA Director George Tenet said in testimony prepared for delivery to Congress on Wednesday.
He also said that bin Laden, whom the United States accuses of masterminding attacks on two U.S. embassies in Africa in 1998, is trying to acquire chemical, biological and nuclear weapons.
``Despite some well-publicized disruptions, we believe he could still strike without additional warning,'' Tenet said in a draft of the testimony obtained by Reuters.
Bin Laden and other ``terrorist'' groups continue to develop ''surrogates'' to carry out attacks in an effort to avoid detection, Tenet said. The draft testimony could be changed prior to his testifying to the Senate Intelligence Committee on Wednesday.
He gave as an example the Egyptian Islamic Jihad as being closely linked to bin Laden's organization and having operatives in Europe, Yemen, Pakistan, Lebanon, and Afghanistan.
``An important development over the past year is that bin Laden has identified new extremists who previously had few ties to his organization and little interest in targeting us where we sleep,'' Tenet said. He cited a web of alliances among Sunni extremists including groups in North Africa, radical Palestinians, and groups in Pakistan and parts of central Asia.
Bin Laden also provides ``substantial support'' to extremist groups based in Kashmir who were believed to be involved in the hijacking of an Indian airliner last year, Tenet said...
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