- The Washington Times - Thursday, January 5, 2017

The U.S. State Department added a familiar last name to its terrorist blacklist on Thursday.

Hamza bin Laden, the son of deceased al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden, has been placed on a Specially Designated Global Terrorist list by executive order. Since last summer he has pushed for the overthrow of the Kingdom Saudi Arabia, attempted to influence terror alliances in Syria, and called and for attacks in European cities.

“The imposition of sanctions by the United States against terrorists is a powerful tool,” the State Department said Thursday on its website. “Today’s action notifies the U.S. public and the international community that Hamza bin Laden is actively engaged in terrorism.”

Hamza, now in his mid-20s, officially followed in his father’s terrorist footsteps on Aug. 14, 2015, when senior al Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri declared his membership in the group. Osama died four years earlier on May 2, 2011, when members of SEAL Team 6 killed him during operation Neptune’s Spear in Abbottabad, Pakistan.

A CIA analyst who spoke to Agence France-Presse Thursday said that letters found during the 2011 raid revealed Hamza’s desire to train with the terrorist organization. The father and son had not seen each other for eight years when the letter was written.

The Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks orchestrated under Osama bin Laden’s command killed 2,977 victims in New York, Pennsylvania and Washington, D.C.

• Douglas Ernst can be reached at dernst@washingtontimes.com.

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