No more restrictions on Osama: Taliban

Islamabad, Nov 5, IRNA - Taliban have lifted all restrictions on Osama bin Laden and his companions and now they would face no bar in expressing their views, Taliban envoy to Pakistan, Mulla Abdul Salam Zaeef said Monday.

"Their right of freedom and expression has been restored", Zaeef told NNI news agency in an interview.

"When the Americans are out to destroy each and every thing in Afghanistan including schools, mosques and residential areas, how he could be debarred from freedom of expression", he asked.

He said that Osama was now free to express his views without any interruption adding that Taliban are safe and the country's system is working properly.

Asked about the policy of Arab leaders in current situation, he said they are preferring the wealth over the blessing of Allah Almighty.

"But we hold Arab people in high esteem as they are at our back in the war against world Satan. They consider war against Afghans as war against Islam but they under the clutches of their rulers who have preferred to get material interests than those blessings of Allah Almighty", Zaeef observed.

The envoy accused the United Nations of devouring donations of Afghans, asking the people especially the Muslims to directly extend donations to Taliban so that it could reach to the needy people.

He called upon the world Muslims to come to the succor of Afghans as they are in war with infidels who are out to destroy their Islamic identity and in this situation they are duty bound not to leave Afghans in lurch. He asked them to join jihad side by side with Afghans through heads and money.

About Pakistanis, who want to cross into Afghanistan, he said Pakistanis should not enter at this stage, as their lives would be at risk due to continuous strikes. He said that a delegation of Pakistanis visited Jalalabad where they were told not to try to enter Afghanistan in this situation.

He termed the reports as unfounded claiming that Taliban have established contacts with Pakistanis to invite them for Jihad, adding that Taliban have not invited them from abroad for Jihad.

He ridiculed the statement of US Defence Secretary Rumsfeld, in which he has said that Taliban have concealed their arms in mosques, hospitals and schools. He said that this statement is nothing but a lame excuse for hitting civilian population.

He said that he has solid information about Hamid Karzai that he is present in Toba area of Pakistan. He said he is hiding to receive money from the United States. "If he had any support in Afghanistan, he would not move to mountains," he said. He confirmed that four compatriots of Hamid Karzai were killed and twenty five others of his friends are under Taliban's custody.

When his attention was drawn towards a statement of General Musharraf that Taliban are themselves responsible for the present state of affairs, he said that attack on Afghanistan is not a political issue or the issue of Osama. He said that as a matter of fact it was the issue of Islam because the United States wants to destroy Islamic system. He said that Osama and his companions have no hand in attacks on United States on September 11.

::irna 23:43