Family denies bin Laden left son behind

Dec. 27, 2001 at 1:55 PM
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RIYADH, Saudi Arabia, Dec. 27 (UPI) -- The family of Osama bin Laden on Thursday denied reports that the suspected terrorist mastermind fled the Tora Bora region of Afghanistan and left his son there.

According to the Saudi al Madina newspaper, bin Laden family members stressed that bin Laden did not leave any of his children behind.

The comments were prompted by recent reports that bin Laden had fled Tora Bora for Pakistan on Dec. 12 with the help of Bashtun tribesmen, leaving behind his 19-year-old son Salaheddine.

There have also been reports that bin Laden has either died from a lung infection or during U.S. strikes on the Tora Bora cave complexes, though neither report could be confirmed.

The Qatari-based satellite television station al Jazeera on Thursday broadcast a videotape showing bin Laden condemning the West, and in particular the United States, for what he alleges is its war on Islam.

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