New Delhi: A cache of classified military documents published by the whistle-blowing website WikiLeaks, Monday, has thrown new light on the activities of al Qaeda operatives just after the 9/11 terrorist attacks in the United States.
According to the report, on Sept. 11, 2001, the day when the Twin Tower and several cities in the US were attacked, a core group of al Qaida was concentrated in Pakistan’s largest city of Karachi.
As per the WikiLeaks documents, on the day, the accused mastermind of the bombing of the USS Cole was recovering from a tonsillectomy at a hospital in Karachi, while the alleged organiser of the 2002 bombing in Bali, Indonesia, was busy buying lab equipment for a biological weapons program.
And, in a nearby well-guarded house, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, later identified as the mastermind of the September 11 attacks, watched the horrible scene of planes crashing into the twin towers of New York’s World Trade Centre on television along with other key al Qaida members.
The documents also offer some stunning glimpses into the whereabouts and operations of al Qaeda founder Osama bin Laden and his Egyptian deputy, Ayman al-Zawahiri.
The documents, which were provided to the European and US media houses, are intelligence assessments of nearly every one of the 779 individuals who have been held at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, since 2002. In them, analysts have created detailed portraits of detainees based on raw intelligence, including material gleaned from interrogations.
The files — know as Detainee Assessment Briefs or DABs — describe the intelligence value of the detainees and whether they would be a threat to the U.S. if released. To date, 604 detainees have been transferred out of Guantanomo while 172 remain locked up.
The disclosures are likely to provide human right activists with additional ammunition that some cases against inmates appear to be based on flawed evidence. However, the DABs show certain inmates were more dangerous than previously known to the public and could complicate efforts by the U.S. to transfer detainees out of the controversial prison that President Barack Obama has failed to close.
The dossier also provides new insights into some of the prison`s most notorious detainees such as Khalid Sheikh Mohammed. According to another report, Mohammed had also arraigned for the assignation of Pakistan`s former present Pervez Musharraf, but before the plan could succeed he was arrested.
With Agency Inputs