Saudi Arabia has revoked the citizenship of Hamza bin Laden, the son of the late al-Qaida leader who has become an increasingly prominent figure in the terror network - and whose whereabouts remains in question, the country announced on Friday.
The UN Security Council committee in charge of Al Qaeda-related sanctions said on Thursday that Hamza bin Laden's prominence has grown in recent years, calling him "the most probable successor" to lead a potential new version of the terror group.
The 15th of Osama bin Laden's 20 children and a son of his third wife, Hamza has been groomed to follow in his father's footsteps since childhood. "He has released audio and video messages on the Internet, calling on his followers to launch attacks against the United States and its Western allies, and he has threatened attacks against the United States in revenge for the May 2011 killing of his father by U.S. military forces".
The threats are meant as revenge for the 2011 killing of his father, according to the statement, which was released on Thursday.
Osama bin Laden was killed by U.S. soldiers in Abbottabad, Pakistan in a raid 10 years after the 9/11 attacks.
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In a video released by the Central Intelligence Agency in 2017, seized during the Abbottabad raid, shows Hamza bin Laden at his wedding with a trimmed moustache but no beard. Since then, any assets he may have in that country have been frozen and U.S. firms and individuals are banned from doing business with him. "He has released audio and video messages on the Internet, calling on his followers to launch attacks against the United States and its Western allies, and he has threatened attacks against the United States in revenge for the May 2011 killing of his father by USA military forces".
In this image from video released by the CIA, Hamza bin Laden is seen as an adult at his wedding. Evanoff said Hamza bin Laden is likely hiding somewhere around the border between Pakistan and Afghanistan.
According to the State Department, Hamza bin Laden is in his early thirties and married to the daughter of Mohammed Atta, the lead hijacker in the September 11 terror attacks against the World Trade Center.
"Al Qaeda's leadership demonstrates strategic patience and its regional affiliates exercise good tactical judgment, embedding themselves in local issues and becoming players", the United Nations report warned.