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Al-Qaeda leader gives video speech on 9/11 anniversary

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Ayman al-Zawahri, who took over as head of Al-Qaeda following the death of Osama Bin Laden, appeared on video to ‘mark’ the anniversary of 9/11. The video comes after rumors of his death had been circulating for several months.

In the video, al-Zawahri referred to the 9/11 attackers as ‘holy warriors’ and ‘lions of Islam’, and celebrates the US withdrawal from Afghanistan, claiming US troops were defeated ‘with the help of God’.

It’s not clear whether this is recent footage, although mentions of a January attack on Russian troops in Syria confirm it was filmed this year. It’s notable that he didn’t mention the Taliban takeover of Kabul, meaning this could be relatively old footage, filmed in advance. Consequently, the Al-Qaeda chief’s current whereabouts and state of health remain unknown.

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