Timothy BANCROFT-HINCHEY: Special Forces in final assault on Bin Laden hideout

British SAS and US Special Forces are believed to be operating inside this complex of caves buried deep beneath a mountain range 13,000 feet high. The complex is so far underground that it is impervious to bombing raids, even using bunker busters. Some say that Osama Bin Laden made the complex of caves resistant to nuclear attack through special construction works carried out with money given to him by the CIA to use against the Soviet forces in Afghanistan.

It is thought that Osama Bin Laden is hiding in these caves with between one and three thousand heavily armed followers, and that they have supplies for a number of years.

Meanwhile the bombing raids continue on Kandahar, with Taleban sources reporting civilian deaths. It is impossible to corroborate these sources and any claims which are not backed up by reliable independent sources are classified by the credible international press as propaganda and misinformation by the crumbling regime.

Anti-Taleban Pashtun militia have engaged the Taleban in a furious battle around the airport of Kandahar, the last stronghold of the Taleban, whose leader Mohammad Omar has vowed to defend to the last bullet and the last drop of blood.