WASHINGTON (AP) -- President Bush issued a new "Most Wanted" list on Wednesday, stepping up the worldwide pressure on 22 suspected terrorists, some of whom have been at large for years. "Terrorism has a face and today we expose it for the world to see," Bush said.
"We list their names, we publicize their pictures, we rob them of their secrecy," the president said at the FBI headquarters that has been at the epicenter of the massive investigation into the Sept. 11 suicide hijackings that killed thousands in New York and Washington.
On the list are Osama bin Laden, his two top deputies and several members of his al-Qaida network implicated in earlier bombings overseas against U.S. interests. "They have blood on their hands from Sept. 11 and from other acts against America in Kenya, Tanzania and Yemen," said Secretary of State Colin Powell, who also announced a State Department reward program offering large bounties for assistance that leads to the terrorists' arrest.
The 22 indicted suspects are the most dangerous terrorists, Bush said, "the leaders key supporters planners and strategists. They must be found, they will be stopped."
The White House was also working with the TV show "America's Most Wanted" to put together a special broadcast on the list, officials said. And Attorney General John Ashcroft created a "9/11 Task Force" within the Justice Department that will handle terrorism case prosecutions and focus on preventing further attacks.
The task force will be comprised of prosecutors from U.S. attorneys offices in New York and northern Virginia and from the department's terrorism and violent crimes unit. The aim is to centralize information on terrorism and formulate indictments for cases, said Justice Department spokeswoman Susan Dryden.
Brainerd Dispatch ©2013. All Rights Reserved.