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Al Zawahri Tells Palestinians "It's Your Right To Enter Egypt"

(Al Sahab)
Al Qaeda's second-in-command Ayman al Zawahri told Palestinians living in Gaza it was their right to enter Egypt through Sinai in a new audiotape that was released by al Qaeda's media wing al Sahab on the Internet Wednesday.

"Those who besiege you are criminals and traitors and enemies of God and his messenger starting from the (Egyptian) national security soldier who protects the barriers of treason to Hosni Mubarak. It is your right to enter Egypt whenever you want to, and to destroy the barriers of treason whenever you want to. Whoever stands in your way has only himself to blame. Egypt is not the (private) ranch of Hosni Mubarak or his son."

Al Zawahri also urged Egyptians to revolt against President Hosni Mubarak, arguing that they "have a duty to rid their country from the traitor and corrupt leadership." He addressed those who live in Sinai in particular and called on them to support the Palestinians in Gaza. Al Zawahri also criticized the Egyptian government for allowing thousands of Israeli tourists into Sinai for the holidays without requiring visas, but not allowing drugs and supplies into Gaza through Egypt.

The 11-minute tape was released on the occasion of the anniversary of the 1967 swift defeat of Egypt, Syria and Jordan by Israel. The audio was played over a picture of the corpse of a baby carried by a young man with other mourners standing around and a picture of al Zawahri.

Al Zawahri spoke in length about the 1967 war, which he referred to as "the setback," a common practice in the Arab world. He slammed Arab leaders and blamed them and secularism for the defeat.

Al Zawahiri also stated that the wealth of Muslim nations was being stolen by the Western countries that supports corrupt Arab governments. "If we don't get rid of them (the crusaders), we might as well starve to death…We shall achieve no independence, nor are we to preserve any wealth, achieve any justice, or political reforms, except by way of Jihad."

Al Qaeda's No. 2 closed his statement by calling on Palestinians not to accept a state within the 1967 borders. "Increase your martyrdom operations, your rocket attacks and your ambushes, for there is no solution other than that," he said.

Al Zawahri's statement carried messages similar to the ones found in al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden's most recent audio tapes, indicating some level of coordination of al Qaeda messages is taking place. Bin Laden had called for an end to the closure of Gaza and urged Egyptians to topple the government of Mubarak in his last two statements issued May 16th and 18th.

This is al Zawahri's sixth statement this year. His last message was an interview-style audio tape released on April 21.