In a 10-minutes video posted in the web, on Sunday 10/04/2009, acting leader of Al Qaeda Ayman Al Zawahiri paid tribute to a senior militant who was held in USA secret prisons and once gave information about links between the terror group and Iraq that was later deemed false (see also – Video 08.28.09 ).

In his 10-minute video, Ayman al-Zawahri eulogized Ali Muhammed Abdel-Aziz Fakheri, a Libyan militant with the nom de guerre of Ibn al-Shaykh al-Libi. The militant reportedly hanged himself with bed sheets in his prison cell in Libya in 05/2009, according to a newspaper with ties to Libyan leader Muamar Gaddafi’s son.

Ali  Fakheri, was captured in Pakistan in 2001 and later sent to Egypt under the CIA’s Extraordinary Rendition program, where he was reportedly tortured and then handed over to Libya.

In the video, Al-Zawahri, dressed in a white traditional Arab robe and white turban, accused President Barack Obama of killing Ali  Fakheri and demanded the U.S. “apologize and pay financial and moral compensation” for those who have been detained in secret prisons.

Zawahiri said the U.S. and Arab governments working with Washington tortured Shaykh al-Libi before eventually handing him over to Libya “to carry on the torture.”

Many experts believe that Al Qaeda is struggling in the face of Obama’s popularity in the Muslim world — especially compared with his predecessor, George W. Bush — and the terror network has frequently sought to portray Obama’s policies as a mere extension of Bush’s.

Under interrogation in Egypt, Ali  Fakheri – Shaykh al-Libi said Iraq, which was then still ruled by Saddam Hussein, had agreed to provide Al Qaeda with training in chemical and biological weapons, according to a 2006 Senate intelligence report. However, in 2002 memos, U.S. defense intelligence officials doubted Shaykh al-Libi’s information, saying he was likely misleading his interrogators.

In 2006, reports concluded that information on Iraqi links with Al Qaeda was not credible. But Shaykh al-Libi’s information had already been used by then-Secretary of State Colin Powell in his February 2003 speech at the United Nations laying out USA reasons for the planned invasion of Iraq (see – US INTEL SOURCES).

Al-Zawahri also reiterated in the video his previous allegations that Washington still runs clandestine jails around the world, and called USA officials “murderers, criminals, vampires.”

The video’s authenticity could not be independently verified. But it appeared on an Islamic Web site commonly used by militants and had the logo of the terror network’s As-Sahab media production wing.

Most of al-Qaida’s leadership, including al-Zawahri, is believed to be hiding in the rugged, mountainous region along the Afghanistan-Pakistan border.
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