Officials: Hamza bin Laden Reported Dead

NEW YORK -
Hamza bin Laden as an adult at his wedding. (CIA via AP/File)

Hamza bin Laden, the son and potential successor of al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden, is dead according to intelligence reports obtained by the United States, according to three U.S. officials. It is unclear if the U.S. has confirmed his death.

NBC reported that details of where or when Hamza bin Laden died were not provided, nor if the U.S. played a role in his death.

Responding to questions by reporters, President Donald Trump said, “I don’t want to comment on that.”

Believed born around 1989, Hamza bin Laden moved to Afghanistan with his father in 1996 when Osama bin Laden declared war against the U.S. As the leader of al-Qaida, Osama bin Laden set his sights on western targets, which culminated in the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on New York’s World Trade Center and on the Pentagon. Subsequently, the younger bin Laden appeared in al-Qaida propaganda videos.

When Navy SEALS killed Osama bin Laden in 2011 during a raid on his Abbottabad, Pakistan, compound, Hamza was not found there. Letters seized from the compound suggested the elder bin Laden was grooming him as a leader.

The State Department announced in February that it would pay as much as $1 million for information on Hamza bin Laden’s whereabouts, who it described as “an emerging al-Qaida leader” who “has threatened attacks against the United States and allies.”