DUBAI (Reuters) - An al Qaeda leader has called for President George W. Bush and the Republicans to be "humiliated," without endorsing any party in the upcoming U.S. presidential election, according to a video posted on the Internet.
"O God, humiliate Bush and his party, O Lord of the Worlds, degrade and defy him," Abu Yahya al-Libi said at the end of sermon marking the Muslim feast of Eid al-Fitr, in a video posted on the Internet.
Libi, one of the top al Qaeda commanders believed to be living in Afghanistan or Pakistan, called for God's wrath to be brought against Bush equating him with past tyrants in history.
The remarks were the first comments from a leading al Qaeda figure referring, albeit indirectly, to the U.S. elections. Muslim clerics often end sermons by calling on God to guide and support Muslims and help defeat their enemies.
In 2004 al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden issued his first video in more than a year just days before the elections to deride President Bush and warn of possible new September 11-style attacks.
Bin Laden made little mention of Bush's Democratic challenger John Kerry, telling Americans: "Your security is not in the hands of Kerry or Bush or al Qaeda. Your security is in your own hands and each state which does not harm our security will remain safe."