NEW YORK–(ENEWSPF)–2 May 2011 – The death of Osama bin Laden, the mastermind behind some of the world’s most notorious terrorist attacks, represents a “watershed moment” in the fight against the scourge of terrorism, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said today.
United States President Barack Obama announced last night that Mr. bin Laden – the founder and head of Al-Qaida – was killed by US forces at a compound in the Pakistani town of Abbottabad, which is located close to the capital, Islamabad.
Speaking to reporters at United Nations Headquarters in New York, Mr. Ban said it was “a day to remember the victims and families of victims, here in the United States and everywhere in the world.”
Mr. bin Laden claimed responsibility for the 11 September 2001 attacks in the US that claimed the lives of nearly 3,000 people. He is also believed to be responsible for organizing or funding many other attacks, including the 1998 bombing of two US embassies in East Africa, the 1995 bombing of a Saudi security training centre in Riyadh and numerous attacks inside Afghanistan.
Mr. Ban described Mr. bin Laden’s death as “a watershed moment in our common global fight against terrorism. The crimes of Al-Qaida touched most continents, bringing tragedy and loss of life to thousands of men, women and children.”
In a statement he voiced relief at the news and commended “the work and the determined and principled commitment of many people in the world who have been struggling to eradicate international terrorism.”
The Secretary-General stressed that the UN would continue to lead the global campaign against terrorism, drawing from the counter-terrorism strategy adopted by the General Assembly.
“The United Nations condemns in the strongest possible terms terrorism in all its forms, regardless of its purpose and wherever it is committed.”