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Iraq's Qaeda shows video of Baghdad hotel blasts - Web

November 25, 2005

Iraq's Qaeda shows video of Baghdad hotel blasts - Web

By Louis Charbonneau and Francois Murphy

DUBAI (Reuters) - Al Qaeda in Iraq posted an Internet video on Thursday showing three suicide bombers which the group said had carried out attacks last month that killed at least 15 people at a fortified hotel compound in Baghdad. 

The video showed three men, whose names appeared to be Iraqi, entering vehicles with which they apparently attacked the Palestine and Sheraton hotels. 

"To the Muslim nation which many people have betrayed ... I tell you that the warriors of truth have arrived to launch their anger on the infidels, the Americans," one of the suicide bombers by the name of Abu Doham said. 

Wearing a black-and-white chequered turban and seated beside an assault rifle, Abu Doham said he was thankful to be granted the chance to carry out the operation. The video later showed him driving a cement truck. 

The truck later exploded near the hotels sending flames and dust high in the air across the city centre. 

A voice-over explained the reconnaissance missions which were carried out on the hotels and an off-camera voice was heard supposedly instructing the suicide bombers on how to carry out the mission. 

"And God granted success to the mujahideen (holy warriors) who hit the Palestine hotel, which held foreign journalists and security companies that protected important people and agencies," a voice-over said. 

The video showed footage of the explosions but it was not clear whether it was footage the group had shot or news footage. 

What appeared to be other group members were heard rejoicing off-camera after seeing footage of the explosions. 

The video also showed what appeared to be old footage of Osama bin Laden and his senior aide Ayman al Zawahri walking along what looked like the mountainous plains of Afghanistan and played what appeared to be old voice clips from bin Laden. 

A voice clip from the group's leader in Iraq Abu Musab al Zarqawi was also played, though it was unclear whether it was new. 

"See the flames which have engulfed Iraq ... and with God's will, the fire will also burn the crusader army," a voice which sounded like al Zarqawi's said, who also urged more resistance until the "crusaders" left Iraq. 

The video's authenticity could not be verified but it was posted on a Web site generally used by insurgents. 

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