9/11: 20 Years Later
On 11 September 2001, 19 al-Qaeda terrorists hijacked and crashed four passenger jets, destroying the World Trade Centre towers in New York and damaging the Pentagon. The attack killed almost 3,000 people and injured 25,000, prompting the launch of US-led military campaigns in Afghanistan and Iraq.
Taliban Initially Offered Help Investigating 9/11 Attacks, Spokesman Says
15:24 GMT 12.09.2021 (Updated: 16:12 GMT 12.09.2021)
MOSCOW (Sputnik) - The Taliban* was ready to cooperate in the investigation into the 9/11 terrorist attacks when they occurred 20 years ago, according to Suhail Shaheen, a spokesman for the movement's political office in Qatar.
"I recall that we condemned the incident. [Abdul Salam] Zareef was the ambassador [to Pakistan] and I was an aide. We called a press conference and we condemned the incident. We said we will cooperate to unearth the real behind the scenes culprits", Shaheen said as quoted by Geo TV on Saturday.
The Taliban called on Washington 20 years ago to resolve the issue through dialogue, not invasion, Shaheen said, adding that al-Qaeda*, the terrorist group responsible for the attacks, did not warn Afghanistan about them. Therefore, the Taliban, who ruled the country at the time, was "caught off-guard", the spokesman said.
In mid-August, as the Taliban took over Kabul, Shaheen said the movement would not let al-Qaeda and other terrorist groups pursue their goals in Afghanistan.
On 11 September 2001, members of al-Qaeda crashed two hijacked commercial planes into the World Trade Centre in New York, while another plane hit the western part of the Pentagon near Washington, DC. A fourth hijacked aircraft crashed near the city of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Nearly 3,000 people died in the attacks.
*The Taliban and al-Qaeda are terrorist organisations banned in Russia and many other nations.