Osama bin Laden praised martyrdom in a new videotape posted on a Web site on Sunday by Al Qaeda’s media production wing.
The bin Laden clip, which lasted less than a minute, was undated and part of a 40-minute video featuring purported Al Qaeda fighters in Afghanistan paying tribute to fellow fighters who have been killed in the country.
Bin Laden glorified those who die in the name of Jihad, or holy war.
“The happy (man) is the one that God has chosen him to be a martyr,” added bin Laden, who appeared weary and was shown outdoors wearing army fatigues.
Bin Laden was last heard from in a July 1, 2006 audio tape, in which he voiced support for the new leader of Al Qaeda in Iraq.
Sunday’s video, dedicated to Muslims who have left their homes to fight Jihad, included a series of animated scenes showing green fields overlaid with Arabic names written in gold, representing Arab fighters who had died in Afghanistan.
Following one such sequence, the self-proclaimed leader of Al Qaeda in Afghanistan appeared praising his fellow fighters.
“Your hero sons, courageous knights have left to the land of Afghanistan … the land of Jihad and martyrdom, answering the call for the sake of God to kick out the occupier who has desecrated the pure soil of Afghanistan,” said Mustafa Abu Al Yazeed.
In another clip, a man identified as Mujahid Haidarah Al Hawn was shown sitting in front of a tree with an AK-47 paying tribute to a Syrian fighter, Osama Al Hamawi, who died in an air raid in Afghanistan.
The authenticity of the video could not be verified, but it appeared on a Web site commonly used and carried the logo of as-Sahab, Al Qaedaï¿½s media production wing.