Acquire nuclear technology, says al-Qaida escapee

An al-Qaida member who escaped from a US prison in Afghanistan urged his followers in a new video aired today to acquire nuclear technology.

An al-Qaida member who escaped from a US prison in Afghanistan urged his followers in a new video aired today to acquire nuclear technology.

Abu Yahia al-Libi, who broke out of prison in July 2005, appeared in a video broadcast by the pan-Arab Al-Arabiya TV, telling his followers “to get prepared by starting with exercise ... then learn technology until you are capable of nuclear weapons,” he said.

In the video, al-Libi, who appears to be talking to a group of fighters has a beard and is wearing a long grey robe. The video was the third reportedly featuring al-Libi since he escaped from prison.

Al-Arabiya showed two minutes of what it said was an hour-long video exclusively obtained by the satellite channel. It also showed footage of what appeared to be a group of Arab fighters training.

The authenticity of the tape could not immediately be independently verified, but Al-Arabiya reported that it was produced by the media arm of the Taliban in Afghanistan.

Al-Arabiya said another part of the video showed al-Libi praising Taliban leader Mullah Omar. It did not broadcast that segment.

Last October, Al-Arabiya broadcast a video by al-Libi in which he recounted how he and three other al-Qaida members escaped from a US prison at Bagram Air Base, which is north of Kabul, last year.

The second video, which was posted in May on a Web site used by Islamist militants, suggests that al-Libi, who appeared alone, was still alive earlier this year during the cartoon controversy that peaked in January and February.

Afghan police said at the time of the escape that Abu Yahia al-Libi’s actual name was Abulbakar Mohammed Hassan and that he was Libyan.

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