9/11 plotter spotted in Mir Ali

The trial of Ahmed Siddiqui, the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan operative who allied with al Qaeda and was part of a plot to conduct Mumbai-style attacks in Europe before he was captured in Afghanistan in the summer of 2010, has yielded some interesting information. For instance, two years ago, we knew that Siddiqui said he met with al Qaeda operative Said Bahaji in North Waziritan. Yesterday we found out they met in the Mir Ali area of North Waziristan, which is a known hub for European terrorists who flock to groups such at the IMU, the Islamic Jihad Group, and al Qaeda. From The Associated Press:

In other testimony, Siddiqui told the court he once met Said Bahaji in Mir Ali. Bahaji is believed to have helped suicide hijackers Mohamad Atta, Marwan al-Shehhi and Ziad Jarrah with logistics when they were in Hamburg, and to have himself fled shortly before the attacks.

Siddiqui testified that Bahaji came to visit him and a friend who Bahaji knew from his days in Hamburg.

He told the court Bahaji had married a Spanish woman and had two children, and was helping produce propaganda for al-Qaida’s media wing, Al-Sahab, but was otherwise vague about the meeting.

“We drank tea together,” he told the court, adding that his friend and Bahaji had spoken Arabic, which he did not understand.

Bahaji is making the rounds in Pakistan’s Taliban-controlled tribal agencies. He is thought to have spent time in the neighboring tribal agency of South Waziristan; Pakistani troops found his passport during a raid on a safe house in the tribal agency in 2009. His passport contained a Pakistani visa showing that he entered Pakistan on Sept. 4, 2001, just one week prior to the 9/11 attack.

Bill Roggio is a Senior Fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and the Editor of FDD's Long War Journal.

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