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“Missed bin Laden by Nose“

Posted December. 03, 2001 09:26,   


The Britain`s special forces SAS made a surprise attack on a suspected mountain site where Osama bin Laden was expected to be hiding out, but bin Laden had a narrowly escaped one of Britain`s newspapers reported.

▼ Missed bin Laden

The Britain`s Mail On Sunday reported yesterday that as the hunt for Osama bin Laden gathered pace in Taliban`s southern heartland of Kandahar, eighteen Taliban soldiers were killed and four SAS members have been wounded during the battle in caves of Hada mountains.

This newspaper said that the SAS interrogated the Taliban soldiers who were arrested in this battle, and found that bin Laden escaped about two hours before the attack.

And it is known that 60 members of the SAS will launch a cooperative operation with US special forces on cave camps around Tora Bora where it is believed to be another hideout of bin Laden.

Prior to this attack, the U.S. bombers pounded the southern city Kandahar, the last main Taliban citadel in Afghanistan, on Saturday, and ethnic Pashtun fighters advanced 25 km point of the outskirts of Kandahar. The U.S. Marines additionally deployed 100 marines for supporting 1,000 ground forces who have been operating inside Afghanistan, and began to construct the blockade on the main outer roads of the city in order to cut off the retreat of bin Laden.

Meanwhile, one of Pakistan`s daily newspapers reported yesterday that the suicide attacks of Taliban soldiers killed 65 U.S. marines at most near Kandahar last week, but the U.S. forces source repudiated the report.

▼ Afghan Factions Political Talks

The Afghan factions` political talks in Bonn, Germany, drew the conclusion that the Northern Alliance should constitute the small-scale interim government jointly with three different political factions.

Three exiled Afghan political factions including former Afghan King Zahir Shah accepted the suggestion of the Northern Alliance for the formation of the transitory authority with legislative function during these talks. The small interim administration would start rebuilding the country for a few months until a Loya Jirga (traditional grand assembly) could appoint a long-term government.

The participants of talks said that the interim government would consist of 24 members including 8 members from Northern Alliance whose head is Burhanuddin Rabbani, 8 members from Rome group led by former king Zahir Shah, and two members from each faction, and 4 members from independent faction with exception to 4 major factions.

Sun Dae-In eodls@donga.com