ELUSIVE EMIR LOCATED
AL QAEDA OFFICIALS SHELTERED
Osama bin Laden is alive and well and living in Savzevar, Iran, with his al Qaeda compatriots.
His hiding place has pinned down for the first time by the Kuwaiti daily newspaper Al-Siyassa as the mountain town of Savzevar in the northeastern Iranian province of Khorasan,.
Bin Laden, according to the report, remains in Savzevar under the protection of SAVAMA, the Iranian intelligence service.
Other al-Qaeda dignitaries reportedly are sheltered in Iranian safe-houses, including Dr. Ayman al-Zawahari, who has been spotted in the guise of an Iranian cleric with a black turban and a dyed red beard, along with Saad bin Laden, Osama’s eldest son; Yaaz bin Sifat, a top ranking planner of terror operations; and Mohammed Islam Haani, who served as the mayor of Kabul under the Taliban.
More news concerning bin Laden has been earthed by Israeli intelligence officers, who disclosed that Recep Erdogan, Turkey’s Prime Minister, remains aware that the al Qaeda officials were safely housed in Iran.
The leak to the Kuwaiti daily purportedly was intended to display the strong bonds that have developed between Turkey and Iran in the wake of the Israeli commando raid on a Turkish vessel, which was leading a fleet of ships through the Gaza blockade on May 31.
Savzevar, a small town of about a quarter of a million inhabitants, is connected by road to Tehran and Mashhad and has a small airport.
A center for producing grapes and raisins, Savzevar is difficult to access because it is enclosed by lofty mountains and a salt desert of more than 50,000 square kilometers.
On May 13, American intelligence sources reported that several al Qaeda operatives, including Saif al-Adel, have received permission from the Iranian government to leave the country and to cross the Iranian border into Turkey for the purpose of orchestrating terrorist attacks on American targets.
Al-Adel is believed to have been assigned the task of planning an attack on the world soccer games which open in South Africa on June 12.
Last December, US Defense Secretary Robert Gates acknowledged the United States has not had any good intelligence on bin Laden’s whereabouts in years. Until recently, the elusive master-terrorist was generally thought to have gone to ground in the wilder parts of Pakistan-Afghanistan border region.
Osama bin Laden’s ties to Iran stem back to 1995 when he forged an alliance with Imad Fayez Mugniyah, the founder and senior intelligence officer of Hezbollah, and attended a terror summit in Tehran.
Mugniyah assisted bin Laden in establishing the first cells of al Qaeda in South America.
In the wake of the bombing of Tora Bora in December 2001 by U.S.-led coalition forces, more than five hundred al Qaeda and Taliban operatives scaled the mountains in the south along the Afghanistan-Pakistan border. They cut through Afghanistan’s southernmost provinces to head west to Iran, where they found safe haven.