US & Canada

Sulaiman Abu Ghaith sentenced to life in prison

An image from a video showing Suleiman Abu Ghaith seated left of Osama Bin Laden, on 12 September 2001 Image copyright Al Jazeera
Image caption Abu Ghaith (left) appeared alongside Bin Laden in a video just one day after the 9/11 attacks

Osama Bin Laden's son-in-law, who was an al-Qaeda spokesman after 9/11, has been sentenced to life in prison for terrorism-related charges at a trial in New York.

Sulaiman Abu Ghaith, 48, is the highest-ranking al-Qaeda figure to face trial on US soil since the attacks.

The Kuwaiti clergyman was captured in Jordan last year and brought to the US.

In March, a jury found Abu Ghaith guilty of conspiracy to kill Americans and aiding al-Qaeda.

Addressing him directly, US District Judge Lewis Kaplan said it was his "assessment that you are committed to doing everything you can to carry out al Qaeda's agenda to kill Americans".

Videos showing Abu Ghaith threatening America with no end to the "storm of airplanes'' were shown to jurors.

Abu Ghaith argued his role was a purely religious one, aimed at encouraging all Muslims to rise up against their oppressors.

He testified that Bin Laden had asked him to be al-Qaeda's spokesman on the night of the 9/11 attacks.

Image copyright AFP
Image caption Abu Ghaith repeatedly claimed al-Qaeda responsibility for the 9/11 attacks, in his videos

Abu Ghaith, who is one of the highest-ranking al-Qaeda linked figures to face a civilian jury on terrorism-related charges, is married to Bin Laden's eldest daughter Fatima.

Bin Laden, a founder of al-Qaeda, was killed by US forces in May 2011 at his hideout in Pakistan.

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