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Sunday, 7 October, 2001, 19:06 GMT 20:06 UK
Bin Laden warns US
Osama Bin Laden
Message first broadcast on Arabic station Al Jazeera
Osama Bin Laden has warned the United States that it will never enjoy security unless Islamic territories are also safe.

To America I say I swear by God the great... America will never taste security and safety unless we feel security and safety in our lands and in Palestine

Osama Bin Laden
In a statement broadcast on Al Jazeera television, thought to have been recorded during daylight hours on Sunday, Bin Laden said the United States had declared war on Islam and called on Muslims to support their religion.

The statement was also broadcast on CNN television shortly after US President George Bush announced retaliatory attacks on Afghanistan had begun.

Afghanistan has refused to hand over Bin Laden whom the US holds responsible for the 11 September attacks on New York and Washington.

'Two camps'

The video appeared to show Bin Laden kneeling in a stone cave or shelter, with a gun at his side and flanked by two supporters.

America is full of fear from its north to its south, from its west to its east

Osama Bin Laden
He said: "America was hit by God in one of its softest spots.

"America is full of fear from its north to its south, from its west to its east. Thank God for that."

Bin Laden did not claim responsibility for the 11 September attacks but warned US citizens they should fear further attacks.

"To America I say I swear by God the great... America will never taste security and safety unless we feel security and safety in our lands and in Palestine," he said.

"They will not feel safe until the troops of the United States of America withdraw from the Muslim holy places."

They supported murder so God has given them back what they deserve

Osama Bin Laden
He said that America's war on terror was a war on Islam.

"These events have split the world into two camps - belief and disbelief. Every Muslim should support his religion," he said.

He described Mr Bush as the "head of the infidels".

"Millions of innocent children are being killed in Iraq and in Palestine and we don't hear a word from the infidels. We don't hear a raised voice," he said.

"When the sword falls on the United States, they cry for their children and they cry for their people.

"The least you can say about these people is that they are sinners. They have helped evil triumph over good."

Bin Laden's words were preceded by a call on Muslim youth to launch a jihad, or holy war, on America and its allies.

The appeal came from the Bin Laden's right hand man, the Egyptian militant, Ayman al-Zawahri.

Comparing the current situation to the enmity which the prophet Mohammed encountered from the powerful tribes of Arabia, Mr Zawahri said a new Islamic epic was underway.

The US campaign is aimed at destroying Bin Laden's al-Qaeda network.

Mr Bush has said he wants Bin Laden "dead or alive".

President George W. Bush
"The Taleban will pay the price"
Osama Bin Laden
"Every Muslim should support his religion"
The BBC's John Simpson
reports from within Afghanistan
See also:

07 Oct 01 | South Asia
US begins military strike
07 Oct 01 | Americas
Timeline: Afghanistan air strikes
18 Sep 01 | South Asia
Who is Osama Bin Laden?
20 Sep 01 | Americas
What is terrorism?
20 Sep 01 | Americas
The trail to Bin Laden
19 Sep 01 | South Asia
Analysis: Who are the Taleban?
20 Sep 01 | Americas
Powell's challenge
18 Sep 01 | South Asia
Profile: Mullah Mohammed Omar
20 Sep 01 | Americas
Cheney: Power behind the throne
20 Sep 01 | Americas
Profile: Donald Rumsfeld
05 Oct 01 | Americas
The investigation and the evidence
25 Sep 01 | Americas
Guide to military strength
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