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Ordered by the House of Commons to be printed 14th July 2004 - page 49 / 216

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negotiation and there is no indication that he can be deterred.

[JIC, 18 September 2001]

  • 126.

    The JIC also went on in this paper to note Usama bin Laden’s interest in nuclear devices.

  • 127.

    The British Government’s dossier of 4 October 20016, which attributed the attacks of 11 September 2001 to Usama bin Laden, also reflected the attractiveness to him of nuclear, biological and chemical weapons, saying that: From the early 1990s Usama bin Laden has sought to obtain nuclear and chemical materials for use as weapons of terror. and reminding its readership that: When asked in 1998 about obtaining chemical or nuclear weapons he said “acquiring such weapons for the defence of Muslims (was) a religious duty”’. [Government’s dossier, 4 October 2001]

    • 3.7

      INTELLIGENCE ON UBL’S CAPABILITIES AND ITS VALIDATION

  • 128.

    A considerable quantity of evidence of Usama bin Laden’s capabilities in the nuclear, biological and chemical fields was uncovered after the US-led military action in Afghanistan in October 2001. This section compares these discoveries with JIC judgements beforehand.

NUCLEAR

129.

In 1999, the JIC reported Usama bin Laden’s claims to be setting up a laboratory in Afghanistan. Following the collapse of the Taliban regime, in January 2002 the United Nations Security Council listed a former Pakistani nuclear scientist Bashir Mahmoud as associated with the Taliban or Al Qaida.

CHEMICAL

130.

Intelligence reporting from 1999 onwards testified to the activities of Abu Khabbab, an explosives and chemicals expert who ran training courses which included information on how to make and use poisons. This was confirmed by discoveries in Afghanistan such as a video showing chemical experiments being carried out on animals, and by the finding of numerous training manuals.

BIOLOGICAL

131.

In 1999, the JIC reported that:

In February 1999 one of his followers claimed that UBL intended to attack US and UK targets in India,Indonesia and the US,by using means which even the US co uld

6

Responsibility for the Terrorist Atrocities in the United States,11 Sept ember 2001”.

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