BEIRUT, Lebanon – The Arabic satellite channel Al-Jazeera aired a video of al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden and his deputy Ayman al-Zawahri on Wednesday, and an accompanying audiotape attributed to al-Zawahri called on Iraqi guerrillas to “bury” American troops in Iraq.
“We salute the mujahedeen brothers in Iraq and press on their hands and ask Allah to bless their sacrifices and valor in fighting the Crusaders,” the voice on the tape said.
Al-Jazeera said the video footage was produced in late April or early May.
“We tell you that Allah is with you and the (Islamic) nation supports you. Depend on Allah. Devour the Americans just like the lions devour their prey. Bury them in the Iraqi graveyard,” said the voice attributed to al-Zawahri.
In the footage, bin Laden and al-Zawahri walked down a rocky mountain dotted with green grass. In one shot, bin Laden was helped by a cane in his right hand and wore a blanket over his left shoulder. In another, bin Laden had an AK-47 assault rifle in his left hand.
Al-Jazeera did not say how or when it obtained the tape, but it said the two appeared aging in the tape.
The tape comes a day before the 2nd anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on the United States, attributed to al-Qaida.