Osama bin Laden’s son Hamza has called on Muslims around the world to avenge his father’s death at the hands of the United States.
In the 25-minute audio recording released this week, the new al-Qaeda spokesman called for an “uprising” against America and its agents.
Hamza, now aged 27 or 28, praised his father as a martyr who “was able to rub America’s nose in dust and strike at its very heart” before his death.
“He was able to revive the spirit of Jihad,” said Hamza, who is thought to be living in Iran. “He made the sweet springs of Jihad gush forth from beneath the surface, one after another, in different parts of the Islamic World, and the good work continues, with the permission of Allah.
“He, may Allah have mercy on him, was able to revive the spirit of honour, freedom, and glory in the individual Muslim.”
Hamza praised his father’s “generosity and loyalty”, describing the September 11 mastermind as an “exemplary and symbolic leader” and describing his austere lifestyle, which involved eating “mere oil, salt, and a piece of bread” for lunch and dinner.
His father was killed in 2011 during a raid by US forces on the bin Laden family’s Pakistan compound at Abbottabad, along with another son, Khalid, and three others. His death was celebrated as a huge blow to al-Qaeda and global terrorism, but the organisation is starting to see a resurgence as the Islamic State loses territory.
The CIA last week released never-before-seen footage of bin Laden’s successor as part of a trove of material recovered during the May 2011 raid that killed the al-Qaeda leader.
One hour-long video shows Hamza, sporting a trimmed moustache but no beard, at his wedding. The footage, apparently shot in Iran, was the first public image of bin Laden’s favourite son as an adult.
The files also included bin Laden’s handwritten journal and around 79,000 images and audio files, including practice reels of public speeches.