The following story appears in today's The Moscow Times [No. 3053; November 22, 2004]
Osama bin Laden has been actively involved in the terrorist insurgency in Chechnya since 1995, sending al-Qaida agents to the North Caucasus and sponsoring Chechen rebels, according to a declassified U.S. intelligence report released by Judicial Watch, a U.S. public corruption watchdog, late last week. Bin Laden sent Jordanian-born warlord Khattab, who is now dead, and nine instructors to Chechnya in 1995 to set up terrorist training camps, according to the six-page U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency report, which was based on notes from an unspecified person in 1998 and is marked at the top as not "finally evaluated intelligence." It says bin Laden met several times in 1997 with Chechen and Dagestani Wahhabis and "settled the question of cooperation -- agreeing to provide 'financial supplies' to Chechen militants." A senior Chechen rebel, Movladi Udugov, denied Saturday that the rebels had any ties to al-Qaida -- a link that the Kremlin has long maintained exists. He said the document's wording suggests it was designed by Russian special services.
Labels: al Qaeda, Al-Qa'idah, Al-Qaeda, Al-Qaida, Chechnya, Judicial Watch, Khattab, Osama bin Laden, Wahhabis