Abdullah bin Laden, eldest son of Osama bin Laden met all top Taliban leaders last year, according to a report of the UN Security Council
Osama bin Laden’s eldest son, Abdullah bin Laden travelled to Afghanistan in October last year and met all top Taliban leaders, says the latest report of the UN Security Council on activities of the Islamic State and Al-Qaeda and their affiliates, which was made public last week.
The report says that some of Al-Qaeda's "closest sympathizers within the Taliban now occupy senior positions in the new Afghan administration." It confirms the return of Amin Muhammad ul-Haq Saam Khan who coordinated security for Laden to the country.
It is believed that Khan arranged the meeting between Abdullah Laden and the Taliban leaders.
The UN report underlines that Al-Qaeda in the Indian subcontinent (AQIS), which is led by Osama Mehmood and his deputy Atif Yahya Ghouri, “retains a presence in Afghanistan, in the provinces of Ghazni, Helmand, Kandahar, Nimruz, Paktika and Zabul, where the group fought alongside the Taliban” against the ousted government of Ashraf Ghani.
AQIS is estimated to have between 200 and 400 fighters, mainly from Afghanistan, Bangladesh, India, Myanmar and Pakistan, the report said. It underlines that there were no signs that the Taliban had taken any step to limit the activities of foreign terrorist fighters in the country after their return to power.
“On the contrary, terrorist groups enjoy greater freedom there than at any time in recent history,” it said. The UN report says that the ISIS affiliate (ISIS-K) is recruiting and expanding. In recent months, the group has released regular videos of its attacks on Taliban officials and fighters.
Mentioning Osama bin Laden’s eldest son Abdullah Laden, the report says that “one Member State reported that Bin Laden’s son, Abdallah (not listed), visited Afghanistan in October for meetings with the Taliban. Current al-Qaeda chief Aiman al-Zawahiri was reported alive as recently as January 2021, but member States continue to believe that he is in poor health.”
Report says Al-Qaeda congratulated the Taliban on August 31 after their “spectacular” victory but after that the militant group has been maintaining a strategic silence, which is “likely an effort not to compromise Taliban efforts to gain international legitimacy.”
The security experts are trying to decode Abdullah bin Laden’s visit to Afghanistan. Abdullah’s name was in the news in 2015, when WikiLeaks revealed that he had written to the US Embassy in Saudi Arabia and asked the United States for a death certificate of his father, four months after Osama bin Laden was killed by the US forces during a raid on his hideout in Pakistan. In response, the embassy wrote to Abdullah to inform him that there was no death certificate issued for his father Osama bin Laden.
Abdullah bin Laden,44, is the eldest of Osama bin Laden’s 20 children. He runs his own firm, Fame Advertising, in Jeddah. He is closely watched by the Saudi government which has restricted his travel from the Kingdom since 1996. Abdullah Bin Laden, who reportedly has never disowned his father, is close to his father's half-brother, a prominent businessman Bakr bin Laden. Security agencies are wondering how Abdullah was allowed by the Saudi government to travel to Afghanistan.
When it was last in power, the Taliban provided a safe haven in Afghanistan to Osama bin Laden, who had fought with the mujahideen against the Soviet Union in the 1980s while he built up the al-+++Qaeda terrorist network. Security agencies have warned that the return of the Taliban could mean a resurgence of Al-Qaeda. In its earlier report, the UN warned that Al-Qaeda was present in 15 of Afghanistan’s 34 provinces, mostly in the country’s eastern and southern regions. The Taliban and Al-Qaeda “remain closely aligned and show no indication of breaking ties,” the UN report said.
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