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January 17, 2002
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Global Manhunt For 'Suicide Terrorists'

(CNN) -- The United States announced a worldwide manhunt Thursday for five men whom officials said may be planning new, possibly imminent, terrorist attacks.

U.S. officials appealed to the public for help in locating the men featured in photos and videotapes released Thursday by the Justice Department.

"We believe that these could be and likely appear to be sort of martyrdom messages from suicide terrorists," said Attorney General John Ashcroft. "Whether or not the attack would be imminent or not is something we can't determine."

He said the videotapes were found in the rubble of Muhammed Atef's house in Afghanistan. Atef was indicted in connection with the 1998 bombings of U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania.

All five men featured in the videotape excerpts are suspected of having ties to Osama bin Laden's al Qaeda terrorist network.

Four of the men were identified by name: Abd Al-Rahim, Muhammad Sa'id Ali Hasan, Khalid Ibn Muhammad Al-Juhani and Ramzi Binalshibh. The fifth man was unidentified.

Little was known about the men, Ashcroft said, except for Binalshibh, who was named as an unindicted co-conspirator in the government's indictment against Zacarias Moussaoui, the only person charged so far in direct connection to the September 11 attacks.

Meanwhile, a plane carrying 30 al Qaeda and Taliban detainees arrived Thursday at the U.S. naval base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, according to the Pentagon. It was the fourth such flight since last week and brings to 110 the number of detainees being held at Camp X-Ray. Officials said there were no problems during the flight.

Representatives from the Red Cross are expected to tour Camp X-ray on Thursday. U.S. officials said the Red Cross will be able to speak with each detainee, and military officials will explain to them the security procedures in place at the camp. (Full story)

A U.S. Marine Corps general said the Afghan war prisoners were being treated humanely, even as some detainees have threatened to kill their American captors. (Full story)

U.S. intelligence officials said Thursday a man who showed up at the airport in Kandahar, Afghanistan, apparently does not have credible information on the locations of bin Laden or Taliban spiritual leader Mullah Mohammed Omar. There had been hopes the man would provide an "intelligence breakthrough" that would lead to Omar or bin Laden. One official said reports about information the man might have were exaggerated. The officials said they believe bin Laden and Omar are alive and still in Afghanistan.

Other developments
  • U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell, speaking in Kabul, the Afghanistan capital, promised Thursday the country could count on a long-term commitment from the United States. "We will be with you in this current crisis and in the future," Powell said at a news conference with Afghan interim leader Hamid Karzai. (Full story)
  • Police in Leicester, England, arrested 11 people Thursday as part of a European antiterrorism investigation. Authorities charged eight of the suspects under Britain's terrorism act and three others with immigration violations. (Full story)
  • Police in Leicester, England arrested 11 people Thursday as part of a European anti-terror investigation. Authorities charged eight of the suspects under Britain's terrorism act and three others with immigration violations. (Full story)
  • A man has been arrested at London's Heathrow Airport after he was found carrying "sharp items" hidden in his shoes and socks, authorities said Thursday. (Full story)
  • A federal grand jury in Boston, Massachusetts, on Wednesday indicted suspected "shoe bomber" Richard Reid on seven additional charges, including attempted murder, placing an explosive device on an airplane and attempted use of a weapon of mass destruction. (Full story)
  • Based on information taken from a computer found in Afghanistan, U.S. officials said they have circumstantial evidence suggesting Reid scouted potential targets for al Qaeda. (Full story)






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