Pakistani Islamist leader: Americans at Risk if Bin Laden Harmed
A leader of radical Pakistani Islamic party Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam (JUI) warned Saturday that Americans in the region were at risk if Osama bin Laden was harmed by the United States.
"We have decided to launch jihad (holy war) against Americans if anything happens to Osama bin Laden as a result of any US attack," said JUI's Mufti Jamil.
"No Americans, including the US ambassador, will be safe in Pakistan," Jamil told AFP.
Fears linger in the region that the US may attack Afghanistan if it concludes bin Laden was behind last month's bombing of a US navy destroyer in Yemen, in which 17 American sailors were killed.
JUI, a strong supporter of the Afghan ruling Taliban militia, considers bin Laden a hero of Islam.
"Thousands of Muslims, who love Osama bin Laden, will be on the streets and go after Americans if he is attacked," Jamil said.
The party was at the forefront of angry anti-US protests in 1998 after the US carried out missile strikes on suspected camps of bin Landen in Afghanistan soon after the twin bombings of American embassies in Kenya and Tanzania.
The ruling Taliban militia has spurned US demands to expel bin Laden from Afghanistan – KARACHI (AFP)
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