DOHA: Osama bin Laden, the al-Qaeda leader, has condemned the US and other industrial economies, holding them responsible for the phenomenon of climate change.
In an audio tape obtained by Arab television, bin Laden criticised George Bush, the former US president, for rejecting the Kyoto pact and condemned global corporations.
“This is a message to the whole world about those responsible for climate change and its repercussions – whether intentionally or unintentionally – and about the action we must take,” bin Laden said.
“Speaking about climate change is not a matter of intellectual luxury – the phenomenon is an actual fact.”
In the new recording, bin Laden says “all the industrial states” are to blame for climate change, “yet the majority of those states have signed the Kyoto Protocol and agreed to curb the emission of harmful gases”.
He continued: “However, George Bush junior, preceded by [the US] congress, dismissed the agreement to placate giant corporations. And they are themselves standing behind speculation, monopoly and soaring living costs.
“They are also behind ‘globalisation and its tragic implications’. And whenever the perpetrators are found guilty, the heads of state rush to rescue them using public money.”
The Kyoto Protocol, a UN treaty aimed at combating global warming, was adopted in December 1997 and has since been ratified by 187 states, but not by the US congress.
In the new recording, bin Laden said: “Noam Chomsky was correct when he compared the US policies to those of the Mafia. They are the true terrorists and therefore we should refrain from dealing in the US dollar and should try to get rid of this currency as early as possible.
While continuing to attack America, bin Laden’s comments mark a shift from his earlier, more regionally focused commentary.