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Thursday, July 15, 2004

Why are Nearly 400 Members of Al-Qaeda Living in Iran?

July 15, 2004
Hundreds of alleged members of Al-Qaeda, including 18 of its top leaders, and other terror groups are living in Iran, some under tight security, the London-based Asharq Al-Awsat newspaper reported.

"More than 384 members of Al-Qaeda and other terrorist organizations are present in Iran, including 18 senior leaders of Osama bin Laden's network," the daily said, citing a senior source in the Iranian presidency.

Al-Qaeda has been threatening an attack on the United States perhaps before the November election.  Similarly, the Iranian government, a known supporter of terrorism has also been threatening action against the United States.

In a speech, last May, a top Revolutionary Guards official, Hassan Abbassi, an intelligence theoretician, who teaches at the Revolutionary Guards' Al-Hussein University, said, "there are 29 sensitive sites in the U.S. and in the West. We have already spied on these sites and we know how we are going to attack them, ‘ according to the Middle East Media Research Institute (Memri.org).
 
The Saudi-owned newspaper, Asharq Al-Awsat, said the terrorist leaders were living under tight protection, some of them in villas in the Namak Abrud region, near the town of Chalous on the Caspian coast, (60 miles) north of Tehran. Others are living in Lavizan, in the northwest of the capital, and which also houses a large military complex, it added.  Authorities in Tehran would not verify their report.

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