Yemeni authorities deny bin Laden’s interceding to release bin Attash [Archives:2004/759/Front Page]

August 29 2004

Official sources said in a statement on the Yemeni Ministry of Defense's Website that no Yemeni official has ever received a call from Osama Bin Laden or any other al-Qaeda leader.
This statement comes in response to a US report claiming that al-Qaeda leader Osama Bin Laden made phone calls with an official in the Yemeni Political Security in 1991 to release one of al-Qaeda's members.
A US panel set up to probe into Sept 11th attacks said in a report released Friday 23rd July that Bin Laden himself interceded with a Yemeni official in 1991 in order to release an al-Qaeda member.
Tawfiq Bin Attash, the al-Qaeda member, known also as Khaled bin Attash, was arrested early 1999, along with another suspect on the wanted list of the Yemeni authorities, said the US panel's report.
The Yemeni source considered the alleged call between bin Laden and a Yemeni official as “false information, lacking precision and objectivity, and beyond reality.”
Yemeni authorities set bin Attash free, only to be arrested once again in the Pakistani city of Karachi and handed over to the US in April, 2003.