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U-S Authorities Detect bin Laden's Voice on Radio Near Tora Bora - 2001-12-15


U-S forces say they have detected Osama bin Laden giving orders over a short-range radio in the Tora Bora area of eastern Afghanistan during the past week.

U-S officials today (Saturday) say they confirmed the voice on the radio was bin Laden's by comparing it with his voice from several videotapes.

Meanwhile, U-S marines are preparing a prison camp at Kandahar's airport to hold up to 300 al-Qaida fighters who might surrender or be captured.

U-S planes kept up their bombing of the Tora Bora region, where hundreds of al-Qaida fighters loyal to Osama bin Laden are believed to be defending a network of caves and tunnels. On the ground, Afghan commanders were faced with conflicting reports of possible surrenders.

U-S Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld's lightning tour of the Caucasus today (Saturday) took him to Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia. In all three countries, Mr. Rumsfeld promised U-S military assistance in exchange for help in the U-S-led war against terrorism.

The Defense Secretary is expected to stop off at Bagram Air Base outside of Kabul Sunday, on his way to Uzbekistan and Belgium.

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