Overthrow your President, al-Zawahri told Pakistanis

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In the audio tape broadcast by the pan-Arab satellite channel Al-Jazeera, the speaker called Musharraf a “traitor” and called on Pakistani soldiers to disobey him.

“Musharraf seeks to stab the Islamic resistance in Afghanistan in the back,” the voice said.

The authenticity of the tape could not be immediately verified, but the speaker sounded like al-Zawahri on previous audio and video tapes. He also peppered his speech with references to the Islamic holy book, the Quran, which is known to be al-Zawahri’s style.

The speaker said: “The crusade in Afghanistan, Iraq, Chechnya and Palestine is targeting Pakistan primarily, because America does not want Pakistan to be a special power in the centre of Asia.

The CIA was reviewing the tape in an effort to determine whether it was authentic, a US intelligence official was quoted by Reuters as saying.