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Declassified Bin Laden archive posted online

04 may 2011, 10:12
A local research institute has published a trove of declassified US government documents on Al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden, who was killed by US forces in Pakistan over the weekend, AFP reprots.

The National Security Archive said the documents trace US concerns about bin Laden from a 1996 CIA sketch that called him "one of the most significant financial sponsors of Islamic terrorist activities in the world."

It also includes a nearly 400-page profile compiled in 1999 by Sandia National Laboratories as well as the now-famous August 2001 briefing entitled "Bin Ladin determined to strike in US," using an alternate version of his name.

The archive includes a memo from two days after the September 11 attacks by then-deputy secretary of state Richard Armitage saying that, should bin Laden be found responsible, Pakistan should sever all ties to the Taliban regime then sheltering him in Afghanistan and help Washington "destroy" him.

Many of the documents have been released before, but are now collected in the same place at www.nsarchive.org.

Ben Laden was gunned down by US commandos in an early morning raid Monday on his compound outside the Pakistani capital of Islamabad without the Pakistani government's knowledge, according to US officials.

His killing ended a decade-long manhunt and marked a major victory against Al-Qaeda's global network, which killed 3,000 people in the September 11, 2001 attacks.

The National Security Archive is a non-governmental institution located at George Washington University here.

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